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Reflexivity as situated problem-solving: a pragmatist alternative to general theory

Holmwood, John

Authors

John Holmwood john.holmwood@nottingham.ac.uk



Abstract

Recent developments in sociological theory have addressed the linkage between structure and agency via a conception of reflexivity and the agent’s internal conversation as a means of understanding the (variable) contribution that the self and its powers contribute to social outcomes. In this paper, I present a sociological realism utilising the approach of American pragmatism (Dewey and Mead) to argue for a different way of conceptualising reflexivity, namely as an occasioned feature of interaction. On this view, reflexivity arises in relation to problems in interaction and is oriented to their resolution. It is argued that the self has a social structure and that reflexivity inheres in interactions and not in different types of individual self-identity. The paper discusses general issues of reflexivity in terms of conceptions of sociology’s “dialogic.” Archer’s relation to actors whose behaviours are under scrutiny, before going on to discuss Margaret Archer’s typology of the “inner dialogues” of actors and its use to understand social mobility.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 31, 2014
Journal Sociologica
Electronic ISSN 1971-8853
Publisher Alma Mater Studiorum - Università di Bologna
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 2014
Issue 1
APA6 Citation Holmwood, J. (2014). Reflexivity as situated problem-solving: a pragmatist alternative to general theory. Sociologica, 2014(1), doi:10.2383/77051
DOI https://doi.org/10.2383/77051
Keywords Agency, Foundationalism, Internal Conversation, Social Integration, Social Self
Publisher URL http://www.sociologica.mulino.it/doi/10.2383/77051
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd-sa/4.0

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Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd-sa/4.0





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