Read The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise in the Sociology of Knowledge by Peter L. Berger Free Online
Book Title: The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise in the Sociology of Knowledge|
Date of issue: 1967
ISBN 13: 9780385058988
The author of the book: Peter L. Berger
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 37.87 MB
Read full description of the books The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise in the Sociology of Knowledge:This is quite an interesting book. Its main thesis is an attempt to tie together epistemology and sociology. TO SUMMARIZE: Thought is a social construct. Our ways of thinking are influenced by our ancestors and traditions. There's also Wittgenstein's baby - how language affects thought.
Of course, after watching both political conventions over the past two weeks, it is necessary to discuss the political role of this idea. One could see it being discussed by reformers/radicals, who want to change society and assist oppressed peoples by changing the long-held societal misconceptions which lead to their oppression. Another possibility involves a certain long-gone form of conservatism, which remarks on the fragility of society, and that any reform attempts must be undertaken with great care. This conservatism, of course, is not the naked imperial greed which calls itself 'conservative' today.
One example of social constructs is race. Compare America and Western Europe. In the former, 'white people' are a monolithic bloc, in the latter, there are still hazy distinctions drawn up between North and South European, Germanic and Slav. I know the feeling of race directly - I have been mistaken, at various times in my life, for being Russian, Mexican, and half-Chinese or half-Vietnamese. My mother is also mistaken for Chinese, despite being Filipino. Other possibilities about social construction include sexuality, political beliefs, professions, and others.
Such an idea has its charms, but also its detractors. I wonder how a biological approach to ideas, such as neuroscience or evolutionary psychology (as flawed as the latter is) might make an approach to such similar topics. For a book on sociology, it does raise the question of if we can truly attempt to understand the point of view of a person who's lived in a completely different society than we have.
Read information about the authorPeter L. Berger is an internationally renowned sociologist, and the founder of Boston University's Institute on Culture, Religion, and World Affairs. He was born in Vienna and came to the U.S. in his late teens. He has a master's degree and a doctorate from the New School for Social Research in New York. After two years in the United States Army, he taught at the University of Georgia and the University of North Carolina before going to the Hartford Seminary Foundation as an Assistant Professor in Social Ethics.
In 1992, Peter Berger was awarded the Manes Sperber Prize, presented by the Austrian government for significant contributions to culture. He is the author of many books, among them The Social Construction of Reality, The Homeless Mind, and Questions of Faith.
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