Re: The scientific status of PCP

W Ramsay (
Mon, 17 Jun 1996 14:28:47 +0100

MIke Mascolo writes, in reply to Lois Shawver and me:

<big snip>

> I cannot speak for Brian, but I agree with his view on this issue.
>Yes, according to the individuality corrollary, individuals can create a
>wide variety of dichotomous constructs, including religion-science. The
>question is: Is that the only dichotomy that can be created? Is it
>somehow a valid or natural one?

I'm glad to see we're agreed on the first point, Mike. In repsonse to your
questions: No (otherwise constructive alternativisim is history) and For
whom? Actually, 'valid' I can wear, in PCP-sociality terms, but what's
'natural' - specifically what's your implicit pole of 'natural <-> ??'?

>Is science *really* in opposition to
>science -- well in some ways yes, in others no. It seems to me, as others
>have articulated, the dogmatism-critical reflection dichotomy (and others)
>like it are more useful in describing and evaluating systems that purport
>to describe the world. Some versions of religion embody much critical
>reflection and little dogmatism; some people who call themselves scientists
>do otherwise.

I can't argue with this. (I presume the second 'science' was meant to be
'religion'.) What it says to me is that for some 'religious <-> scientific'
is a core construct subsuming, e.g. 'dogmatic <-> critical' and a few other
things besides. Others may not - obviously _do_not_ - have such a core
construct. Which makes much of this discussion failry redundant. Fun, but
> Remember: I can define individuality in contradistinction to dependence
>-- I get a very different construct if I define individuality in opposition
>to interdependence, or if I define dependence in opposition to lonliness.
>There are many ways of parsing our experince.

Again, no argument frome me there. For example, 'behaviourist <->
constructivist' is _not_ in my own construct system, although I often parse
(interesting choice of words) my experience in behaviourist terms. It's
clearly a fairly core construct in others'!!



Bill Ramsay,
Dept. of Educational Studies,
University of Strathclyde,
Jordanhill Campus,
G13 1PP,

'phone: +44 (0)141 950 3364
'fax: +44 (0)141 950 3367