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Theory And Psychology


The vast majority of social constructionist writings have been critical of psychological science-on both ideological and conceptual grounds. The constructionist emphasis on microsocial processes also functions oppositionally to psychological accounting. The existing animus grows, however, from a realist metaphysics and a correspondence view of language, neither of which constructionism endorses. Viewing the relationship between constructionism and psychological science in more pragmatic terms, we find three significant ways in which constructionism contributes to a more fully enriched and broadly effective psychology. First, critical constructionism functions to denaturalize psychological accounts, opening them to reflexive deliberation, and democratizing the field more generally. Second, constructionist metatheory invites a resuscitation of marginal or suppressed discourse within the field, and invigorates societally engaged efforts to forge new and more useful discourses of the mind. Finally, social constructionism offers the possibility for a fundamental reconceptualization of the self. Illustrative is the family of theories conceptualizing the self as either constituted by or constituting relationships.


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