Socialconstructionism

Discussion in 'Every Day Debating' started by Emelie, Apr 2, 2013.

  1. Emelie

    Emelie Queen of darkness

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2012
    Messages:
    3,929
    Likes Received:
    47
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Yggdrasil
    Ratings:
    +62 / 0 / -0
    What do you think about social constructions? is it good or bad? Do you like it/dislike it? Does it exist at all? Where can you see it in everyday life? How much does it effect us?

    Since my bachelors thesis is about identity and social construction and our main theory is socialconstructionism, it would be fun to see what you guys have to say about it.
     
  2. JIM

    JIM zombie Turncoat

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Messages:
    6,499
    Likes Received:
    211
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    chasing the zombies
    Ratings:
    +327 / 1 / -0
    what what?
    social constructions, is that the bar the builders go to after work?
     
  3. Kelmourne

    Kelmourne The Savage Hippy

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2008
    Messages:
    8,018
    Likes Received:
    116
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    A Pirate city in international cyberspace
    Ratings:
    +117 / 0 / -0
    Do stereotypes like nerd, jock, rocker, hipster, film geek count as social constructs?

    If so, I think they were originally invented as words to describe people who did things. Now people want to do things specifically so they can be called one of them (people who try way too hard to be a geek or a jock, etc...) and it sorta ruins the original meaning of the word.
     
  4. Sparrow

    Sparrow Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    2,822
    Likes Received:
    159
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    here and there
    Ratings:
    +251 / 3 / -1
    This is a topic which I once thought wasn't so relative anymore, but I've come to believe that Social Constructivism is the be all and end all to our lives. That is it's the quintessential element we all share... we are not individuals, only knockoffs of individuals.

    Look at two microbes under a microscope. They may appear to be spaced far apart and having very different characteristics, but pull your eye back from the microscope and now what do you see? They are nearly alike and practically touching. I think that's the insidious thing about the Social Constructs we all except and pattern our lives to; it's the illusion of choice, of individualism, of latitude. The differences are almost inconsequential, just watch springs and gears.

    Take two people on this forum, myself and SJ... look at us under a microscope. We're quite different aren't we. I think I can safely say I'm less conformist and SJ is more conformist, or one of us is more or less bound to social constructs than the other is. But now, step away from the microscope and view us from a skyscraper, or better yet from the Moon. We are just about the same person. It just doesn't matter that I may be an atheist and SJ may believe in a supernatural component to our existence. Contextually, our understanding of reality is shared, no matter how different the details are we're essentially backed into a corner by biology, evolution, and social interaction.


    I think those things that make us individuals are mostly just superficial bullshit.
     
  5. JIM

    JIM zombie Turncoat

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Messages:
    6,499
    Likes Received:
    211
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    chasing the zombies
    Ratings:
    +327 / 1 / -0
    so no bar for the builders? but where will they drink?
     
  6. Kelmourne

    Kelmourne The Savage Hippy

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2008
    Messages:
    8,018
    Likes Received:
    116
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    A Pirate city in international cyberspace
    Ratings:
    +117 / 0 / -0
    You're just changing the perspective though. On an individual basis people are very different, especially when it comes to how they interact with other people. From an even further point of view, the perspective from a skyscraper and the perspective from the moon are the same thing. From an even further ideological perspective, a perspective from the moon is indistinguishable from you as a person even though you aren't even the same thing. It is true that we are caged by our society but every generation has people who break it, making it a trend but not an absolute rule.
     
  7. Kelmourne

    Kelmourne The Savage Hippy

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2008
    Messages:
    8,018
    Likes Received:
    116
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    A Pirate city in international cyberspace
    Ratings:
    +117 / 0 / -0
    On the job I guess.
     
  8. S.J. Faerlind

    S.J. Faerlind Flashlight Shadowhunter

    Joined:
    May 29, 2012
    Messages:
    5,642
    Likes Received:
    191
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    Canada
    Ratings:
    +298 / 2 / -1
    From Wiki: When we say that something is socially constructed, we are focusing on its dependence on contingent variables of our social selves rather than any inherent quality that it possesses in itself. The underlying assumptions on which social constructivism is typically seen to be based on reality, knowledge, and learning.

    I think experience of reality plays a huge role in making people individuals. Many tiny differences in experience can add up to vastly different outcomes in people. Some of the reality we experience is undoubtedly made up of social constructs because being a social species, we tend to believe in each other's reality. Or, we at least adapt someone else's to be more in line with our own. If we didn't we wouldn't be very social at all because we'd have no common ground with each other. I suppose for that reason, social constructionism could be considered to be a good thing.

    Still, within that framework, 2 people can have widely different ideas about the same social construct (gender for example). Similarly, one person might believe in something as purely a social construct (for example Sparrow being atheist because he perceives God as a social construct), while the perception of God as a living entity for another person (me for example) is simply a part of my reality because of my experiences with it/him/her.

    I think people get so bent out of shape over differences in perception because of social constructionism. "If you don't accept my reality then maybe I shouldn't either." That shakes some people to their very foundations and I have to wonder if they fear being cut adrift without an anchor in some kind of reality. It isn't hard for me to see why people get so insistent that their perceptions "MUST" be right and that everyone has to adopt them. The more people that adopt them, the more "real" and validated a person's reality feels to them. Personally I can't look at it that way. I know the world as I perceive it. What anyone else makes of it is just as valid to them. I don't need anyone else to validate my perceptions in order to accept them.
    I suppose because of this "need to defend one's reality" that a lot of people seem to have, I would also consider social constructionism to be a bad thing.

    I thought this was an excellent point Kel :)

    You again! :p
     
  9. Emelie

    Emelie Queen of darkness

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2012
    Messages:
    3,929
    Likes Received:
    47
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Yggdrasil
    Ratings:
    +62 / 0 / -0
    Yes, they do. It involves everything we as humans have made up.
    Well I guess that's why words always needs to be renewed over the time or change, cause after a while, stereotypes and prejudice does come in the picture.

    Well I guess the thing is, that we do make up all these stuff and make it into what it is. Like a mold you should fit into, in so many aspects. In the end, we're all human, but still we're different.

    It's all about how you view it as you say. If we're gonna use gender as an example. Some see gender as something purely biological, while some see it as a social construction. Now there's no denial really that it is a social construct to some parts, but then there are those that believe it more or less.
    I can see what you mean by why it would be a bad thing from your point of view. However, seeing things as a social construct also opens up for changes that we might not think could happen before. Which for me is positive.
     
  10. JIM

    JIM zombie Turncoat

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Messages:
    6,499
    Likes Received:
    211
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    chasing the zombies
    Ratings:
    +327 / 1 / -0
    i'm a union man, just making sure the boys have a place to drink
     
  11. S.J. Faerlind

    S.J. Faerlind Flashlight Shadowhunter

    Joined:
    May 29, 2012
    Messages:
    5,642
    Likes Received:
    191
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    Canada
    Ratings:
    +298 / 2 / -1
    fair enough.... you'll just have to construct them a place to be social then :D

    @Em: I don't think social constructs are all bad... like everything else in human society, there's just good and bad aspects to them.