Friday, 6 November 2009

Stake on constructivism

Constructivism: the belief that knowledge is made up largely of social interpretation rather than awareness of external reality.

I have to nourish the belief that knowledge is constructed - that's the term Stake uses on page 99 'nourish'. It's an odd metaphor of food and nutrition - why do I have to nourish beliefs? Will beliefs starve without it? my research approach will wither and die without that belief. Why? Because my research approach is founded on the belief that people create and construct engagement between them. Engagement is not a given reality that everyone agrees on. the word itself has various meanings;
  • engage - in a fight. See soldier who engaged with a gunman
  • engage - take someone on in a contractual and legal arrangement - even a marriage is such an arrangement, hence a couple gets engaged.
  • engage - a relationship that's positive and helpful, which is where I want to look
Without understanding and accepting these various understandings my research cannot progress. Therefore my research is founded on constructivism.

Stake, R. E. (1995). Art of case study research, Sage.

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