FACTOID # 18: Alaska spends more money per capita on elementary and secondary education than any other state.
 
 Home   Encyclopedia   Statistics   States A-Z   Flags   Maps   FAQ   About 
   
 
WHAT'S NEW
 

SEARCH ALL

FACTS & STATISTICS    Advanced view

Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

 

 

(* = Graphable)

 

 


Encyclopedia > Social constructionism

Social constructionism or social constructivism is a sociological theory of knowledge that considers how social phenomena develop in particular social contexts. Within constructionist thought, a social construction (social construct) is a concept or practice which may appear to be natural and obvious to those who accept it, but in reality is an invention or artifact of a particular culture or society. Social constructs are generally understood to be the by-products (often unintended or unconscious) of countless human choices rather than laws resulting from divine will or nature. This is not usually taken to imply a radical anti-determinism, however. Social constructionism is usually opposed to essentialism, which defines specific phenomena instead in terms of transhistorical essences independent of conscious beings that determine the categorical structure of reality. [citation needed] Social Constructivism in education and learning theory is a theory of human learning in light of learners social situation / community. ... Sociological theory can refer to: contemporary sociological theory social theory sociological paradigms (also known as perespectives or frameworks) See also list of theories in sociology. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... A social construction, social construct or social concept is an institutionalized entity or artifact in a social system invented or constructed by participants in a particular culture or society that exists because people agree to behave as if it exists, or agree to follow certain conventional rules, or behave as... A cultural artifact is an man-made object which gives information about the culture of its creator and users. ... Determinism is the philosophical proposition that every event, including human cognition and behavior, decision and action, is causally determined by an unbroken chain of prior occurrences. ... In philosophy, essentialism is the view, that, for any specific kind of entity it is at least theoretically possible to specify a finite list of characteristics —all of which any entity must have to belong to the group defined. ... An entity or concept is transhistorical if it holds throughout human history, not merely within the frame of reference of a particular form of society at a particular stage of historical development. ...


A major focus of social constructionism is to uncover the ways in which individuals and groups participate in the creation of their perceived social reality. It involves looking at the ways social phenomena are created, institutionalized, and made into tradition by humans. Socially constructed reality is seen as an ongoing, dynamic process; reality is reproduced by people acting on their interpretations and their knowledge of it. For other uses, see Reality (disambiguation). ... Social phenomena include all behavior which influences or is influenced by organisms sufficiently alive to respond to one another. ... For other uses, see Tradition (disambiguation). ... Illustration of a physical process: a geyser in action. Process (lat. ... Interpretation, or interpreting, is an activity that consists of establishing, either simultaneously or consecutively, oral or gestural communications between two or more speakers who are not speaking (or signing) the same language. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ...


Constructionism became prominent in the U.S. with Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann's 1966 book, The Social Construction of Reality. Berger and Luckmann argue that all knowledge, including the most basic, taken-for-granted common sense knowledge of everyday reality, is derived from and maintained by social interactions. When people interact, they do so with the understanding that their respective perceptions of reality are related, and as they act upon this understanding their common knowledge of reality becomes reinforced. Since this common sense knowledge is negotiated by people, human typifications, significations and institutions come to be presented as part of an objective reality. It is in this sense that it can be said that reality is socially constructed. The specific mechanisms underlying Berger and Luckmann's notion of social construction are discussed further in social construction. Peter Ludwig Berger (born March 17, 1929) is an American sociologist well known for his work The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise in the Sociology of Knowledge (New York, 1966). ... Thomas Luckmann (b. ... Year 1966 (MCMLXVI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the 1966 Gregorian calendar. ... The Social Construction of Reality is a classic book in the sociology of knowledge written by Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann and published in 1966. ... For other uses, see Common sense (disambiguation). ... Interaction is a kind of action which occurs as two or more objects have an effect upon one another. ... Typification is a process of creating standard (typical) social constructs based on standard assumptions. ... Signification is the act of signifying or being a sign or meaning. ... A social institution is any institution in a socity that works to socialize the groups or people in it. ... A social construction, social construct or social concept is an institutionalized entity or artifact in a social system invented or constructed by participants in a particular culture or society that exists because people agree to behave as if it exists, or agree to follow certain conventional rules, or behave as...

Contents

Precursors

Marvin Carlson believes within our lives they “are structured according to repeated socially sanctioned modes of behaviour” and this “raises the possibility that all human activity could potentially be considered as performance.”(Marin Carlson, “What is Performance?”) This includes the idea of social construction, this is the unnatural way in which people act in public society to conform. In the tradition of sociology of knowledge, what seems real to members of a social class arises from the situation of the class, such as the capitalist or working classes, especially with respect to the economic fundamentals which affect the class. According to the theories advanced by Karl Mannheim, who formulated the classic theories of sociology of knowledge, intellectuals occupy a special position which is to some extent free of the intellectual blinders imposed by the social position of other classes. [citation needed]Antonio Gramsci's theory of hegemony both prefigures and enriches current social constructionist discourse. As a Marxist, Gramsci was interested in the way inequities between classes are maintained, and the role of knowledge in this process. Marx himself recognized the important role of knowledge in the maintenance of class structure, observing that the prevailing ideology in society tends to be the ideology of the ruling class, and proposing that the proletariat are suppressed by a social structure which gave a ‘false consciousness’. Whilst previous Marxist thinkers saw hegemony in terms of political and ideological leadership, Gramsci took the idea of hegemony as ideological dominance and expanded it to the common sense knowledge of the everyday. In Gramsci’s view, the interests of the ruling class are not only reflected in politics and ideologies, but also in the taken-for-granted, assumed-as-natural knowledge that appears as common sense. By accepting a version of common sense that protects the interests of the bourgeoisie as natural and inevitable, the proletariat ‘consent’ to domination: revolution is prevented and the social order is maintained. [1] Michel Foucault's influential idea of "discourse" (and "discursive formation") can also be seen to contribute to and connect with social contructionist thought. Buskers perform in San Francisco A performance, in performing arts, generally comprises an event in which one group of people (the performer or performers) behave in a particular way for another group of people (the audience). ... Social class refers to the hierarchical distinctions between individuals or groups in societies or cultures. ... For other uses, see Capitalism (disambiguation). ... Karl Mannheim (March 27, 1893, Budapest - January 9, 1947, London) was a Jewish Hungarian-born sociologist, influential in the first half of the 20th century and one of the founding fathers of classical sociology. ... The sociology of knowledge is the study of the relationship between human thought and the social context within which it arises, and of the effects prevailing ideas have on societies. ... “Literati” redirects here. ... Antonio Gramsci (IPA: ) (January 22, 1891 – April 27, 1937) was an Italian writer, politician and political theorist. ... Hegemony (pronounced or ) (Greek: ) is the dominance of one group over other groups, with or without the threat of force, to the extent that, for instance, the dominant party can dictate the terms of trade to its advantage; more broadly, cultural perspectives become skewed to favor the dominant group. ... Marxism is the political practice and social theory based on the works of Karl Marx, a 19th century philosopher, economist, journalist, and revolutionary, along with Friedrich Engels. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... Marx is a common German surname. ... False consciousness is the Engelsist hypothesis that material and institutional processes in capitalist society mislead the proletariat — and perhaps the other classes — over the nature of capitalism. ... Hegemony (pronounced or ) (Greek: ) is the dominance of one group over other groups, with or without the threat of force, to the extent that, for instance, the dominant party can dictate the terms of trade to its advantage; more broadly, cultural perspectives become skewed to favor the dominant group. ... Hegemony (pronounced or ) (Greek: ) is the dominance of one group over other groups, with or without the threat of force, to the extent that, for instance, the dominant party can dictate the terms of trade to its advantage; more broadly, cultural perspectives become skewed to favor the dominant group. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... The proletariat (from Latin proles, offspring) is a term used to identify a lower social class; a member of such a class is proletarian. ... Michel Foucault (IPA pronunciation: ) (October 15, 1926 – June 25, 1984) was a French philosopher and historian. ...


Sociologist Talcott Parsons used the concept of gloss to discuss the idea that 'reality' is constructed, that we are all actors on a stage. [citation needed] ........... Talcott Parsons Talcott Edgar Frederick Parsons (December 13, 1902–May 8, 1979) was for many years the best-known sociologist in the United States, and indeed one of the best-known in the world. ... A gloss is a note made in the margins or between the lines of a book, in which the meaning of the text in its original language is explained in another language. ...


The background and development of social constructivism

From traditional education to cognitive constructivism

The constructivist movement has grown essentially from dissatisfaction with educational methods where rote memorisation, regurgitation of facts and the division of knowledge into different subjects, led to a situation where learners were not necessarily able to apply what they have learned in real life (Dixon-Kraus 1996). As early as 1929, Alfred North Whitehead argued that the way students learn many things in school produces inert knowledge - knowledge that can be used to answer items on a school test but which is not available to the student when he or she is trying to solve a problem that requires that knowledge (Flavell and Piaget 1963). It has been suggested that Rote memory be merged into this article or section. ... Alfred North Whitehead, OM (February 15, 1861 Ramsgate, Kent, England – December 30, 1947 Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA) was an English-born mathematician who became a philosopher. ...


Furthermore, in traditional rationalist and behaviourist approaches, instruction is focused on covering an extensive subject area, reducing the amount of time for problem-solving and thinking beyond the facts, thus minimising independent and autonomous learning. It also encourages didactic lecture formats rather than active student learning (Holt and Willard-Holt 2000). This fundamental problem led to the viewpoint that instructors should only provide appropriate learning situations that will allow students to develop their own knowledge, meaning and truth that will be useful in later life. Providing a problem-solving context for actively engaging students in the thoughtful application of knowledge is an important variable in increasing learning (McMahon 1997). This educational viewpoint is called cognitive constructivism and was derived from the work of Piaget (Flavell and Piaget 1963). It defines learning as an internal process of accommodation, assimilation, and equilibration (Flavell and Piaget 1963). Piaget thus saw learning as a process where an individual constructs his or her own meaning through cognitive processes. The main underlying assumption of constructivism is that individuals are actively involved right from birth in constructing personal meaning that is their own personal understanding from their experiences (Flavell and Piaget 1963). This action-based theory is thus more concerned with the process of learning than with what is learned (McMahon 1997). Constructivism thus goes beyond the study of how the brain stores and retrieves information to examine the ways in which learners make meaning from experience (Savery 1994). Rather than the transmission of knowledge, learning is an internal process of interpretation: learners do not transfer knowledge from the external world into their memories, rather, they create interpretations of the world based upon their past experiences and their interactions in the world. How someone construes the world, their existing metaphors, is at least as powerful a factor influencing what is learned as any characteristic of that world (McMahon 1997). Jean Piaget (August 9, 1896 – September 16, 1980) was a Swiss philosopher, natural scientist and developmental psychologist, well known for his work studying children, his theory of cognitive development and for his epistemological view called genetic epistemology. He created in 1955 the International Centre for Genetic Epistemology in Geneva and...


Most cognitive theories, and the constructivist approaches that have grown out of these, argue that learning should be durable, transferable and self-regulated (Di Vesta 1987). Mechanisms need to be in place to promote the deeper internal processing required for such learning to occur. Look up Cognition in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


From cognitive constructivism to social constructivism

See Social Constructivism (Learning Theory) Social Constructivism in education and learning theory is a theory of human learning in light of learners social situation / community. ...


These thoughts on learning, which we now call cognitive constructivism, paved the way for the emergence of the educational theory called social constructivism (McMahon 1997). Lev Semenovich Vygotsky (1896 – 1934), a Belarusian psychologist who lived and worked in a Marxist environment, became famous for his view on mediation as an integral part of human psychology: “the central fact about our psychology is the fact of mediation” (Vygotsky 1978:166). Although his work only became known during the 1960s, his critique on his contemporary Piaget’s cognitive constructivism, led to the understanding of the importance of culture, language and context in the process of constructing knowledge. Whilst Piaget in his Moral judgment of the Child (Piaget, 1932) and Sociological Studies (1977]1995) argued for the importance of co-operation and mutual respect in social interaction as a necessary condition for cognitive development, Vygotsky added the importance of discussing with others, in order to, through the process of mediation, get to a higher order of truth that has also been socially tested (Derry 1999). Vygotsky's “zone of proximal development” is probably his best-known concept. It argues that students can, with help from adults or peers who are more advanced, master concepts and ideas that they cannot understand on their own. Again the emphasis falls on learners actively constructing knowledge and meaning through participating in activities and challenges, with the added emphasis on the interaction between learners and facilitators in order to arrive at a higher level of truth (Sternberg and Williams 1998). Lev Vygotsky Lev Semenovich Vygotsky (Лев Семенович Выготский) (November 17 (November 5 Old Style), 1896 – June 11, 1934) was a Soviet developmental psychologist and the founder of the Cultural-historical psychology. ... Lev Vygotskys notion of zone of proximal development (зона ближайшего развития), often abbreviated ZPD, is the gap between a learners current or actual development level determined by independent problem-solving and the learners emerging or potential level of development. ...


A practical definition of social constructivism

Social constructivism argues that the most optimal learning environment is one where a dynamic interaction between instructors, learners and tasks provides an opportunity for learners to create their own truth due to the interaction with others. Social constructivism thus emphasizes the importance of culture and context in understanding what is happening in society and constructing knowledge based on this understanding (Derry 1999; McMahon 1997).


Paul Ernest (1991) summarises the main foundations of social constructivism as follows: Paul Ernest He is a recent contributor to the social constructivist philosophy of mathematics. ...


Knowledge is not passively received but actively built up by the cognizing subject. “The function of cognition is adaptive and serves the organisation of the experiential world, not the discovery of ontological reality" (Von Glasersfeld 1989:182). The personal theories which result from the organization of the experiential world must fit the constraints imposed by physical and social reality. This is achieved by a cycle of theory-prediction-test-failure-accommodation-new theory. This gives rise to socially agreed theories of the world and social patterns and rules of language use.


In what follows, social constructivism is examined in more detail with specific reference to the way social constructivism views the nature of the learner, the role of the instructor, the learning process and the selection, scope and sequencing of the subject matter. The constructivesm is the reflextion of those who are in place to teach other and how they teach and the information that ues to show other


Social constructionism in sociology and cultural studies

Berger and Luckman's work has been influential in the sociology of knowledge, including the sociology of science, where Karin Knorr-Cetina, Bruno Latour, Barry Barnes, Steve Woolgar and others use the ideas of social constructionism to relate what science has typically characterized as objective facts to the processes of social construction, with the goal of showing that human subjectivity imposes itself on those facts we take to be objective, not solely the other way around. [citation needed] A particularly provocative title in this line of thought is Andrew Pickering's Constructing Quarks: A Sociological History of Particle Physics. The sociology of knowledge is the study of the relationship between human thought and the social context within which it arises, and of the effects prevailing ideas have on societies. ... Sociology of science is the subfield of sociology that deals with the practice of science. ... Karin Knorr-Cetina is an American sociologist well known for the books The Manufacture of Knowledge: An Essay on the Constructivist and Contextual Nature of Science (1981) and Epistemic Cultures: How the Sciences Make Knowledge (New York, 1999) and her work on epistemology and Social constructionism. ... Bruno Latour Bruno Latour (born June 1947, Beaune, France) is a French sociologist of science best known for his books We Have Never Been Modern, Laboratory Life, and Science in Action, describing the process of scientific research from the perspective of social construction based on field observations of working scientists. ... Professor of Sociology at the University of Exeter. ... Steve Woolgar is a sociologist who has worked very close to Bruno Latour, with whom he co-authored Laboratory Life: the Social Construction of Scientific Facts. ... This article is in need of attention. ... Andrew Pickering is a sociologist and historian of science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. ...


Social Constructionism has also left its mark on the Social Shaping of Technology field, especially on the Social construction of technology, or SCOT, and authors as Wiebe Bijker, Trevor Pinch, Maarten van Wesel etc. [2] [3] According to Williams and Edge, Central to Social Shaping of Technology (SST) is the concept that there are `choices (though not necessarily conscious choices) inherent in both the design of individual artifacts and systems, and in the direction or trajectory of innovation programs. ... Social construction of technology (also referred to as SCOT) is a theory within the field of Science and Technology Studies (or Technology and society). ... Wiktionary has a definition of: Scot A Scot is a person from Scotland. ... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Trevor J. Pinch is the chair of the Science and Technology Studies department at Cornell University. ...


Despite its common perception as objective, mathematics is not immune to social constructivist accounts. Sociologists such as Sal Restivo, mathematicians including Reuben Hersh and Philip J. Davis, and philosophers including Paul Ernest have published social constructivist treatments of mathematics. Sal Restivo is a leading contributor to science studies and in particular to the sociology of mathematical knowledge. ... Reuben Hersh (December 9, 1927 - ) is an American mathematician, now an emeritus professor of the University of New Mexico. ... Philip J. Davis is an American applied mathematician. ... Paul Ernest He is a recent contributor to the social constructivist philosophy of mathematics. ...


An illustrative example of social constructionist thought at work is, following the work of Sigmund Freud and Émile Durkheim, religion. Freud argued that the basis for religion is rooted in our psyche, in a need to see some purpose in life. A given religion, then, does not show us some hidden aspect of objective reality, but has rather been constructed according to social and historical processes according to human needs. Peter L. Berger wrote an entire book exploring the social construction of religion, The Sacred Canopy. Sigmund Freud (IPA: ), born Sigismund Schlomo Freud (May 6, 1856 – September 23, 1939), was an Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist who founded the psychoanalytic school of psychology. ... Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Émile Durkheim Émile Durkheim (IPA: ; April 15, 1858 – November 15, 1917) was a French sociologist whose contributions were instrumental in the formation of sociology and anthropology. ...


Social constructionism and postmodernism

Social constructionism can be seen as a source of the postmodern movement, and has been influential in the field of cultural studies. Some have gone so far as to attribute the rise of cultural studies (the cultural turn) to social constructionism. Postmodernism is a term applied to a wide-ranging set of developments in critical theory, philosophy, architecture, art, literature, and culture, which are generally characterized as either emerging from, in reaction to, or superseding, modernism. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... The cultural turn describes developments in cultural studies and the sociology of culture. ...


Within the social constructionist strand of postmodernism, the concept of socially constructed reality stresses the on-going mass-building of worldviews by individuals in dialectical interaction with society at any time. The numerous realities so formed comprise, according to this view, the imagined worlds of human social existence and activity, gradually crystallised by habit into institutions propped up by language conventions, given ongoing legitimacy by mythology, religion and philosophy, maintained by therapies and socialisation, and subjectively internalised by upbringing and education to become part of the identity of social citizens. This article is about the radio show. ... As commonly used, individual refers to a person or to any specific object in a collection. ... In classical philosophy, dialectic (Greek: διαλεκτική) is controversy, Viz. ... For other uses, see Society (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Reality (disambiguation). ... The Imagined Community is a concept coined by Benedict Anderson which states that a nation is socially constructed and ultimately imagined by the people who perceive themselves as part of that group. ... In psychology, habituation is an example of non-associative learning in which there is a progressive diminution of behavioral response probability with repetition of a stimulus. ... Institutions are structures and mechanisms of social order and cooperation governing the behavior of two or more individuals. ... For other uses, see Mythology (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Philosophy (disambiguation). ... In psychology, socialization is the process by which children and others adopt the behavior patterns of the culture that surrounds them. ... This article is in need of attention. ... To internalize is to put something inside of borders where it did not originally belong. ... Identity is an umbrella term used throughout the social sciences for an individuals comprehension of him or herself as a discrete, separate entity. ... The word citizen may refer to: A person with a citizenship Citizen Watch Co. ...


Degrees of social construction

Though social constructionism contains a diverse array of theories and beliefs, it can generally be divided into two camps: Weak social constructionism and strong social constructionism. The two differ mainly in degree, where weak social constructionists tend to see some underlying objective factual elements to reality, and strong social constructionists see everything as, in some way, a social construction. This is not to say that strong social constructionists see the world as ontologically unreal. Rather, they propose that the notions of "real" and "unreal" are themselves social constructs, so that the question of whether anything is "real" is just a matter of social convention. [citation needed] This article is about ontology in philosophy. ...


Weak social constructionism

Linguist Steven Pinker[4] writes that "some categories really are social constructions: they exist only because people tacitly agree to act as if they exist. Examples include money, tenure, citizenship, decorations for bravery, and the presidency of the United States." Steven Pinker Steven Arthur Pinker (born September 18, 1954) is a prominent Canadian-born American experimental psychologist, cognitive scientist, and popular science writer known for his spirited and wide-ranging advocacy of evolutionary psychology and the computational theory of mind. ... For other uses, see Money (disambiguation). ... Look up tenure in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... “Citizen” redirects here. ...


In a similar vein, Stanley Fish[5] has suggested that baseball's "balls and strikes" are social constructions.[6] Stanley Fish (born 1938) is a prominent American literary theorist and legal scholar. ...


Both Fish and Pinker agree that the sorts of objects indicated here can be described as part of what John Searle calls "social reality". [citation needed] In particular, they are, in Searle's terms, ontologically subjective but epistemologically objective. Informally, they require human practices to sustain their existence, but they have an effect that is (basically) universally agreed upon. The disagreement lies in whether this category should be called "socially constructed". Ian Hacking [7] argues that it should not. Furthermore, it is not clear that authors who write "social construction" analyses ever mean "social construction" in Pinker's sense. If they never do, then Pinker (probably among others) has misunderstood the point of a social constructionist argument. In philosophy, an object is a thing, an entity, or a being. ... John Rogers Searle (born July 31, 1932 in Denver, Colorado) is the Slusser Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley, and is noted for contributions to the philosophy of language, philosophy of mind and consciousness, on the characteristics of socially constructed versus physical realities, and on practical reason. ... This article is about ontology in philosophy. ... This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Theory of knowledge redirects here: for other uses, see theory of knowledge (disambiguation) According to Plato, knowledge is a subset of that which is both true and believed Epistemology or theory of knowledge is the branch of philosophy that studies the nature, methods, limitations, and validity of knowledge and belief. ... For other uses of objectivity, see objectivity (disambiguation). ... Ian Hacking, CC (born 1936 in Vancouver) is a philosopher, specializing in the philosophy of science. ...


Strong social constructionism

"Science is a highly elaborated set of conventions brought forth by one particular culture (our own) in the circumstances of one particular historical period; thus it is not, as the standard view would have it, a body of knowledge and testable conjecture concerning the real world. It is a discourse, devised by and for one specialized interpretive community, under terms created by the complex net of social circumstance, political opinion, economic incentive and ideological climate that constitutes the ineluctable human environment of the scientist. Thus, orthodox science is but one discursive community among the many that now exist and that have existed historically. Consequently its truth claims are irreducibly self-referential, in that they can be upheld only by appeal to the standards that define the scientific community and distinguish it from other social formations."[8] Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ...


The anatomy of a social constructionist analysis

"Social construction" may mean many things to many people. Ian Hacking, having examined a wide range of books and articles with titles of the form "The social construction of X" or "Constructing X", argues that when something is said to be "socially constructed", this is shorthand for at least the following two claims: Ian Hacking, CC (born 1936 in Vancouver) is a philosopher, specializing in the philosophy of science. ...

(0) In the present state of affairs, X is taken for granted; X appears to be inevitable.[9]
(1) X need not have existed, or need not be at all as it is. X, or X as it is at present, is not determined by the nature of things; it is not inevitable. [10]

Hacking adds that the following claims are also often, though not always, implied by the use of the phrase "social construction":

(2) X is quite bad as it is.
(3) We would be much better off if X were done away with, or at least radically transformed. [11]

Thus a claim that gender is socially constructed probably means that gender, as currently understood, is not an inevitable result of biology, but highly contingent on social and historical processes. In addition, depending on who is making the claim, it may mean that our current understanding of gender is harmful, and should be modified or eliminated, to the extent possible. Gender in common usage refers to the sexual distinction between male and female. ...


According to Hacking, "social construction" claims are not always clear about exactly what isn't "inevitable", or exactly what "should be done away with." Consider a hypothetical claim that quarks are "socially constructed". On one reading, this means that quarks themselves are not "inevitable" or "determined by the nature of things." On another reading, this means that our idea (or conceptualization, or understanding) of quarks is not "inevitable" or "determined by the nature of things".[12] For other uses, see Quark (disambiguation). ...


Hacking is much more sympathetic to the second reading than the first.[13] Furthermore, he argues that, if the second reading is taken, there need not always be a conflict between saying that quarks are "socially constructed" and saying that they are "real".[14] In our gender example, this means that while a legitimate biological basis for gender may exist, some of society's perceptions of gender may be socially constructed.


The stronger first position, however, is more-or-less an inevitable correlary of Willard Van Orman Quine's concept of ontological relativity, and particularly of the Duhem-Quine thesis. That is, according to Quine and like-minded thinkers (who are not usually characterized as social contructionists) there is no single privileged explanatory framework that is closest to "the things themselves"—every theory has merit only in proportion to its explanatory power. [citation needed] For people named Quine, see Quine (surname). ... Confirmation holism, also called epistemological holism is the claim that a scientific theory cannot be tested in isolation; a test of one theory always depends on other theories and hypotheses. ...


As we step from the phrase to the world of human beings, "social construction" analyses can become more complex. Hacking briefly examines Helène Moussa’s analysis of the social construction of "women refugees".[15] According to him, Moussa's argument has several pieces, some of which may be implicit:

  1. Canadian citizens' idea of "the woman refugee" is not inevitable, but historically contingent. (Thus the idea or category "the woman refugee" can be said to be "socially constructed".)
  2. Women coming to Canada to seek asylum are profoundly affected by the category of "the woman refugee". Among other things, if a woman does not "count" as a "woman refugee" according to the law, she may be deported, and forced to return to very difficult conditions in her homeland.
  3. Such women may modify their behavior, and perhaps even their attitudes towards themselves, in order to gain the benefits of being classified as a "woman refugee".

Hacking suggests that this third part of the analysis, the "interaction" between a socially constructed category and the individuals that are actually or potentially included in that category, is present in many "social construction" analyses involving types of human beings.


Environmental Leftist social constructionism

The Postmodern social constructionist of nature is a theorum of postmodernist continental philosophy that poses an alternative critique of previous mainstream, prometheun dialogue about environmental sustainability and ecopolitics. Whereas traditional criticisms of environmentalism come from the the more conservative "right" of politics, leftist critiques of nature pioneered by postmodernist constructionism highlights the need to recognise "the other". The Implicit assumption made by theorists like Wapner [16] [17] refer to it as a new "response to eco-criticism would require critics to acknowledge the ways in which they themselves silence nature and then to respect the sheer otherness of the nonhuman world." Postmodernity (also called post-modernity or the postmodern condition) is a term used by philosophers, social scientists, art critics and social critics to refer to aspects of contemporary art, culture, economics and social conditions that are the result of the unique features of late 20th century and early 21st century... Continental philosophy is a term used in philosophy to designate one of two major traditions of modern Western philosophy. ... The Earth Day flag includes a NASA photo. ...


This is because postmodernism prides itself on criticizing the urge toward mastery that characterizes modernity. But yet mastery exactly is what postmodernism is exerting as it captures the nonhuman world within its own conceptual domain. That in turn implies postmodern cultural criticism can deepen the modernist urge toward mastery by eliminating the ontological weight of the nonhuman world. "What else could it mean to assert that there is no such thing as nature?" [18]. Thus, the issue becomes an existentialist query about whether nature can exist in a humanist critique, and whether we can discern the "others" views in relation to our actions on their behalf. This theorum has come to be known as "The Wapner Paradigm"


References

  1. ^ Hall, S., Lumley, B. & McLennan, G. (1978). “Politics and Ideology: Gramsci” in On Ideology. University of Birmingham Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies.
  2. ^ Pinch, T. J. (1996). The Social Construction of Technology: a Review. In R. Fox (Ed.), Technological Change; Methods and Themes in the History of Technology (pp. 17 - 35). Amsterdam: Harwood Academic Publishers.
  3. ^ Wesel, M. v. (2006). Why we do not always get what we want; The power imbalance in the Social Shaping of Technology (final draft 29th of june 2006). Unpublished Master Thesis, Universiteit Maastricht, Maastricht (Look for the latest version here).
  4. ^ Pinker, Steven. The Blank Slate : The Modern Denial of Human Nature. Penguin Boos, 2002, p. 202)
  5. ^ Fish 1996
  6. ^ Hacking, Ian. The Social Construction of What? . Harvard University Press, 1999; ISBN 0-674-00412-4, pp. 29-31
  7. ^ Hacking, Ian. 1997
  8. ^ Gross, Paul R. and Levitt, Norman. Higher Superstition: The Academic Left and Its Quarrels with Science. The Johns Hopkins University Press. 1998.
  9. ^ Hacking, Ian. The Social Construction of What? . Harvard University Press, 1999; ISBN 0-674-00412-4, p. 12. Numbering begins with 0 for consistency with Hacking's usage.
  10. ^ Hacking, Ian. The Social Construction of What? . Harvard University Press, 1999; ISBN 0-674-00412-4, p. 6. Emphasis added.
  11. ^ Hacking, Ian. The Social Construction of What? . Harvard University Press, 1999; ISBN 0-674-00412-4, p. 6.
  12. ^ The distinction between "quarks themselves" and "our idea (or conceptualization, or understanding) of quarks" will undoubtedly trouble some with a philosophical bent. Hacking's distinction is based on an intuitive metaphysics, with a split between things out in the world, on one hand, and ideas thereof in our minds, on the other. Hacking is less advocating a serious, particular metaphysics than suggesting a useful way to analyze claims about "social construction". (Hacking, Ian. The Social Construction of What? . Harvard University Press, 1999; ISBN 0-674-00412-4, p. 21-24)
  13. ^ Hacking, Ian. The Social Construction of What? . Harvard University Press, 1999; ISBN 0-674-00412-4, pp. 68-70
  14. ^ Hacking, Ian. The Social Construction of What? . Harvard University Press, 1999; ISBN 0-674-00412-4, pp. 29-30
  15. ^ Hacking, Ian. The Social Construction of What? . Harvard University Press, 1999; ISBN 0-674-00412-4, pp. 9-10
  16. ^ Environmental Activism and World Politics. Paul Wapner (1996). Retrieved on 2007-06-16.
  17. ^ World summit on sustainable development. Paul Wapner (2003). Retrieved on 2007-06-16.
  18. ^ Leftist Criticism of Nature. Dissent Magazine (Fall 2003). Retrieved on 2007-06-16.

Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 167th day of the year (168th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 167th day of the year (168th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 167th day of the year (168th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

Further reading

  • Charles Arthur Willard Liberalism and the Social Grounds of Knowledge Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992.
  • Wilson, D. S. (2005). Evolutionary Social Constructivism. In J. Gottshcall and D. S. Wilson, (Eds.), The Literary Animal: Evolution and the Nature of Narrative. Evanston, IL, Northwestern University Press. Full text

Peter Ludwig Berger (born March 17, 1929) is an American sociologist well known for his work The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise in the Sociology of Knowledge (New York, 1966). ... Thomas Luckmann (b. ... The Social Construction of Reality is a classic book in the sociology of knowledge written by Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann and published in 1966. ... David Sloan Wilson (1949- ) is an American evolutionary biologist. ...

See also

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:

Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Wikiquote is one of a family of wiki-based projects run by the Wikimedia Foundation, running on MediaWiki software. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Social constructionism. ... Constructivism is a perspective in philosophy that views all of our knowledge as constructed, under the assumption that it does not necessarily reflect any external transcendent realities; it is contingent on convention, human perception, and social experience. ... Theory of knowledge redirects here: for other uses, see theory of knowledge (disambiguation) According to Plato, knowledge is a subset of that which is both true and believed Epistemology or theory of knowledge is the branch of philosophy that studies the nature, methods, limitations, and validity of knowledge and belief. ... Ethnomethodology (literally, the study of peoples methods) is a sociological discipline which focuses on the way people make sense of the world and display their understandings of it. ... This article is about the philosophical movement. ... Parametric determinism refers to a Marxist interpretation of the course of history formulated by Prof. ... // Positivism is a philosophy that states that the only authentic knowledge is scientific knowledge, and that such knowledge can only come from positive affirmation of theories through strict scientific method. ... Science and technology studies (STS) is the study of how social, political, and cultural values affect scientific research and technological innovation, and how these in turn affect society, politics, and culture. ... A social construction, social construct or social concept is an institutionalized entity or artifact in a social system invented or constructed by participants in a particular culture or society that exists because people agree to behave as if it exists, or agree to follow certain conventional rules, or behave as... Social Constructivism in education and learning theory is a theory of human learning in light of learners social situation / community. ... Social epistemology can be split into two broad camps: the radical and the non-radical. ... Social theory refers to the use of abstract and often complex theoretical frameworks to explain and analyze social patterns and large-scale social structures. ... Symbolic interactionism is a sociological perspective which examines how individuals and groups interact, focusing on the creation of personal identity through interaction with others. ... The Postmodern social constructionist of nature is a theorum of postmodernist continental philosophy that poses an alternative critique of previous mainstream, prometheun dialogue about environmental sustainability and ecopolitics. ...

External links

  • A critical essay by Peter Slezak

  Results from FactBites:
 
Social constructionism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2159 words)
Socially constructed reality is seen as an ongoing, dynamic process; reality is re-produced by people acting on their interpretations and their knowledge of it.
Social constructionism is dialectically opposed to essentialism, the belief that there are defining transhistorical essences independent of conscious beings that determine the categorical structure of reality.
Social constructionism can be seen as a source of the postmodern movement, and has been influential in the field of cultural studies.
Social constructionism - definition of Social constructionism in Encyclopedia (384 words)
Social constructionism is a school of thought introduced into sociology by Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann with their 1966 book on The Social Construction of Reality.
Socially constructed reality is seen as an on-going dynamic process; reality is re-produced by people acting on their interpretation and their knowledge of it.
Social constructionism is often described as a part of the postmodern movement, and has been influential in the field of cultural studies.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

COMMENTARY     


Share your thoughts, questions and commentary here
Your name
Your comments

Want to know more?
Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

 


Press Releases |  Feeds | Contact
The Wikipedia article included on this page is licensed under the GFDL.
Images may be subject to relevant owners' copyright.
All other elements are (c) copyright NationMaster.com 2003-5. All Rights Reserved.
Usage implies agreement with terms, 1022, m