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An Invitation to Social Construction
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An Invitation to Social Construction

Third Edition


April 2015 | 272 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

This new edition of Kenneth J. Gergen’s celebrated text An Invitation to Social Construction is now even more accessible for students, offering  a clear and thorough introduction to one of the most significant movements in contemporary social science.

 

The Third Edition includes:

  • updates reflecting the many new developments in theory, research, and practice
  • a more student-friendly, personal writing style
  • three new chapters on education, and therapy and health care, and organizations
  • key insights into how social construction can help support you in your research projects, from start to finish.
An Invitation to Social Construction is the must-read text for all social science students, academics and practitioners wishing to learn about social constructionism, along with the forms of inquiry and practice central to its impact.
 
CHAPTER 1: SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION - FROM “WHAT IS” TO “WHAT COULD BE”
Together We Construct our Worlds

 
The Social Origins of the Real and the Good

 
Grounding Dialogues on Social Construction

 
From Deconstruction to Reconstruction

 
Reflective Pragmatism: The Working Vocabularies of the World

 
 
CHAPTER 2: CONSTRUCTING THE REAL AND THE GOOD
The Language We Live By

 
Everyday Conversation: The Power of the Unremarkable

 
Institutional Realities: Foucault on Power

 
Identity Politics: To Be or Not To Be

 
 
CHAPTER 3: HORIZONS OF HUMAN ENQUIRY
From Empiricism to Constructionism

 
Research Traditions in Transformation

 
Discourse Study: Exploring Constructed Worlds

 
Imagination in Action: Qualitative Enquiry

 
 
CHAPTER 4: THE RELATIONAL SELF
Generative Theory

 
Individualism: Separation and its Discontents

 
Self as Relationship: First Steps

 
Self as Relationship: The Emerging Vision

 
Mind as Relational Action

 
Multi-Being: What Shall We Become Together?

 
 
CHAPTER 5: DIALOGUE - CONFLICT AND TRANSFORMATION
Exploring Dialogue: Key Concepts

 
Dialogue and Difference

 
Toward Transformative Dialogue

 
 
CHAPTER 6: EDUCATION AS RELATIONAL PROCESS
Knowledge as Socially Constructed

 
Education as Relational Process

 
The Challenge of Student Evaluation

 
 
CHAPTER 7: THE HELPING PROFESSIONS - CO-CONSTRUCTION IN ACTION
Therapy as Social Construction

 
Collaborative Means to Human Well-being

 
Meaning and Medicine

 
 
CHAPTER 8: MAKING MEANING IN ORGANIZATIONS
Organizing Through Language

 
Relational Organizing: Key to the Future

 
The Organization as System

 
 
CHAPTER 9: SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION IN QUESTION
Realism: “But there is a World Out There!”

 
The Challenge of Moral Relativism

 
Missing Ingredients: The Body and Power

 
The Challenge of Moral Relativism

 

"What we take to be the truth about the world importantly depends on the social relationships of which we are part" - starting from this proposal the reader of this volume is invited to share most recent and enlightening ideas on processes of 'social construction'. The author differentiates his perspectives of reflection on the potentials of social constructivism between discourses and ideas in the academic arena of research approaches, forms of expression, and theoretical exploration on the one, and forms of practice outside the academic world on the other hand. Both perspectives are elaborated on with innovative power and convincingly rich arguments. To my specific needs especially chapter 3 on 'Horizons of Human Inquiry' proved highly informative in the course of conceptualizing a comprehensive lecture on 'Theories in Methodology'. I can truely recommend this differentiated and well informed reflection on recent perspectives in social constructionism.

Professor Sabine Troeger, Dr.
Geography Institute - Library, University of Bonn
August 18, 2015

This text help to provide a theoretical framework for my own Doctoral studies. I will use it in my teaching too.

Mr Robert O'Driscoll
Dept of Adult & Community Education, National Univ of Ireland, Maynooth
July 14, 2015

This book is an inspiring resource for students as well as researchers who want to get an in-depth grasp of current social constructivist thinking. Highly recommendable!

Bjoern Asmussen
Business School, Oxford Brookes University
July 6, 2015

Social Constructionism is a theoretical movement that brings an alternative philosophical assumption regarding reality construction and knowledge production. It is concerned with the ways in which knowledge is historically situated and embedded in cultural values and practices. The Invitation to Social Construction is a book that brings fundamentals of this approach and consequences for professional In this book you can learn the core assumptions of constructionism and will be invited to articulate the ideas with your own professional/research practices.

Mrs Celiane Camargo-Borges
International , University of Applied Sciences
June 21, 2015

Good, broad introduction to social constructivist approaches

Mr Pieter Du Toit
Clinical Psychology, Essex University
June 8, 2015

The theory of social construction has been informing the understanding of clients as well as the development of social work pracitce. I consider the concept as basic to the study of social work.

Dr Shirley Suet-Lin Hung
Department of Social Work, Hong Kong Baptist University
March 31, 2015

A good introduction to social construction for beginning research students who will be unsure what this often-heard and slightly overused term means and whether or not their research will benefit from its usage.

Mr Kenneth Anthony Wilkinson
Dept of Marketing, Ops & Digital Busin, Manchester Metropolitan University
March 21, 2015
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Sample Materials & Chapters

An Invitation to Social Construction: Chapter One


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