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Where do the limits of experience lie? Abandoning the dualism of objectivity and subjectivity

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journal contribution
posted on 03.10.2013 by Christian Greiffenhagen, Wes Sharrock
The relationship between 'subjective' and 'objective' features of social reality (and between 'subjectivist' and 'objectivist' sociological approaches) remains problematic within social thought. Phenomenology is often taken as a paradigmatic example of subjectivist sociology, since it supposedly places exclusive emphasis on actors' 'subjective' interpretations, thereby neglecting 'objective' social structures. In this article, we question whether phenomenology is usefully understood as falling on either side of the standard divides, arguing that phenomenology's conception of 'subjective' experience of social reality includes many features taken to be 'objective' elements of it. We illustrate our argument by a critical examination of Jean Lave's attempt to differentiate social practice theory from phenomenology. We show that many theoretical positions that want to overcome the subjective-objective dualism retain an objectivist conception of the 'subjective' features of social reality. © 2008 SAGE Publications.

History

School

  • Social Sciences

Department

  • Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies

Citation

GREIFFENHAGEN, C. and SHARROCK, W., 2008. Where do the limits of experience lie? Abandoning the dualism of objectivity and subjectivity. History of the Human Sciences, 21 (3), pp. 70 - 93.

Publisher

© SAGE Publications

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publication date

2008

Notes

This article was published in the journal, History of the Human Sciences [© SAGE Publications] and the definitive version is available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0952695108093954

ISSN

0952-6951

eISSN

1461-720X

Language

en

Exports