What is critical social psychology? In what ways can social psychology be progressive or radical? How can it be involved in political critique and reconstruction? Is social psychology itself the problem? Critical social psychology offers a confusing array of diverse answers to these questions. This book cuts through the confusion by revealing the very different assumptions at work in this fast growing field. A critical approach depends on a range of often-implicit theories of society, knowledge, as well as the subject. This book will show the crucial role of these theories for directing critique at different parts of society, suggesting alternative ways of doing research, and effecting social change. It includes chapters fr
Chapter 7: Discourse Critics
When US President George W. Bush was Governor of Texas one of the things he had to do was look at pieces of paper. A video of him doing this would not have been very interesting to watch. We would see a middle-aged man wearing a dark suit and leafing through documents. Images, movements, gross behaviours do not catch much of what is going on here. A psychology based on observing this would be extremely impoverished. To understand what is going on it is vital to understand the words. And, crucially, to understand that Bush's words were not merely an abstract commentary–they were performing acts. In fact Bush was considering documents proposing that incarcerated and convicted murderers should not be killed. As ...