Social Constructivism

Social construction is now an established and widely used metaphor in the social sciences. It refers to the idea that people construct social reality in interaction, especially through language. Such socially constructed things include gender, ethnicity, nations, and religion. There is no religion out there that is independent of the meanings that practitioners, detractors, and scholars give it. Indeed, as many scholars have noted, to call many of the world’s systems of belief and practice religion is to impose a category on traditions whose self-understanding might be rather removed from what passes for religion in the Western world.

Social constructivism—or, alternatively, social constructionism (or simply constructivism/constructionism)—is the approach that focuses on the study of processes of social construction. It is best described loosely as an approach, ...

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