Reconstructing the Psychological Subject: Bodies, Practices and Technologies

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Edited by: Betty M. Bayer & John Shotter

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  • Inquiries in Social Construction

    Series editors

    Kenneth J. Gergen, John Shotter and Sue M. Widdicombe

    Inquiries in Social Construction is designed to facilitate across disciplinary and national boundaries, a revolutionary dialogue within the social sciences and humanities. Central to this dialogue is the idea that all presumptions of the real and the good are constructed within relations among people. This dialogue gives voice to a new range of topics, including the social construction of the person, rhetoric and narrative in the construction of reality, the role of power in making meanings, postmodernist culture and thought, discursive practices, the social constitution of the mental, dialogic process, reflexivity in theory and method, and many more. The series explores the problems and prospects generated by this new relational consciousness, and its implications for science and social life.

    Also in this series

    Discursive Psychology

    Derek Edwards and Jonathan Potter

    Therapy as Social Construction

    edited by Sheila McNamee and Kenneth J. Gergen

    Psychology and Postmodernism

    edited by Steinar Kvale

    Constructing the Social

    edited by Theodore R. Sarbin and John I. Kitsuse

    Conversational Realities

    John Shotter

    Power/Gender

    edited by H. Lorraine Radtke and Henderikus J. Starn

    After Postmodernism

    edited by Herbert W. Simons and Michael Billig

    The Social Self

    edited by David Bakhurst and Christine Sypnowich

    Re-imagining Therapy

    Eero Riikonen and Gregory Smith

    Copyright

    View Copyright Page

    Contributors' Notes

    Betty M. Bayer is Assistant Professor of Social Psychology and teaches in women's studies at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, New York, USA. She has published papers on feminist theory and questions of the body in psychology, and is engaged in research on the history of gender constructions in small group research and on the human-technology remakings of the scientist and scientific practices in twentieth-century psychology.

    Michael Billig is Professor of Social Sciences at Loughborough University, UK. His early work was in the field of experimental social psychology, investigating intergroup relations. Subsequently, he has conducted research into the psychology of prejudice, extreme right-wing ideology and nationalism. Together with fellow members of the Discourse and Rhetoric Group at Loughborough, he has been interested in developing new ways of approaching psychology, based on the study of language and rhetoric. His recent books include Arguing and Thinking, Ideology and Beliefs, Talking of the Royal Family, and Banal Nationalism.

    Ben Bradley works as Reader in Psychology at James Cook University of North Queensland, Australia, and in private practice. His interests are focused on strengthening traditions which link psychology with political action. His current research funding is for projects on depression during pregnancy, changes in infants' blood-circulation during en face social interaction with adults, the letters of William James, and indigenous understandings of development among Australian aborigines and islanders of the Torres Strait. His publications include Visions of Infancy: A Critical Introduction to Child Psychology (1989), and a Special Edition of Theory & Psychology called “The Future of Developmental Theory” which he edited with William Kessen (1993).

    Kenneth Gergen is the Mustin Professor of Psychology at Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania, USA, where he also coordinates an interdisciplinary program in Interpretation Theory. He is a co-founder of the Taos Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to the realization of social constructionist ideas in societal practices, and an Associate Editor of Theory & Psychology. Gergen is the author of Toward Transformation in Social Knowledge, The Saturated Self, and Realities and Relationships.

    Susan E. Hawes is a faculty member and Director of Research at the Clinical Psychology Department of Antioch New England Graduate School, New Hampshire, USA. She is responsible for the doctoral level research curriculum in this “practitioner-scholar” program, and also teaches courses in the historical and social contexts of psychology, qualitative research methods, and postmodern feminist theories. She is currently exploring the following areas: woman-to-woman clinical supervision, and popular discourses on adolescent girls. A practicing clinical psychologist, she maintains a part-time clinical practice in Amherst, Massachusetts.

    Ian Lubek, Professor of Psychology, University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada, and visiting researcher at the GEDISST/IRESCO/CNRS, Paris, France, follows research interests in theory, meta theory and epistemology; violence; history of social psychology; and gender and mentoring issues in the social psychology of science. He has previously written with H.J. Stam (1995), on “ludicro-experimentation,” co-edited two books on theoretical issues in psychology (1995, 1996) and two special journal issues on the history of social psychology (1992, 1993), and is the author or co-author of numerous book chapters, journal articles, and after-dinner ephemera.

    Kareen Ror Malone is Associate Professor of Psychology and on the Women's Studies faculty at State University of West Georgia, Georgia, USA. She has published in the areas of feminist studies, depth psychology, Lacanian psychoanalysis, and social construction. She has recently developed psychological performance pieces that address issues of representation, subjectivity, and body.

    Jill Morawski is a Professor of Psychology at Wesleyan University, Connecticut, USA, whose research includes work in the psychology of gender and the history of psychology. She is author of Practicing Feminisms, Reconstructing Psychology: Notes on a Liminal Science (1994) and editor of The Rise of Experimentation in American Psychology (1988). She currently is working on a study of reproductive technologies and a history of the experimenter and experimental practices in twentieth-century psychology.

    H. Lorraine Radtke is Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Her current research involves the use of a discursive approach in the study of gender and social psychology. She is co-editor of Power/Gender: Social Relations in Theory and Practice (1994).

    Edward E. Sampson is Professor of Psychology at California State University in Northridge, California, USA. In addition to teaching four undergraduate courses each semester, he has somehow found time to write a dozen books and numerous articles, including Celebrating the Other, Justice and the Critique of Pure Psychology, and, forthcoming, Dealing with Differences: An Introduction to the Social Psychology of Prejudice. During the last 25 years, most of his work has contributed to the development of a critical and transformative rather than a traditional psychology.

    John Shotter is Professor of Interpersonal Relations in the Department of Communication, University of New Hampshire, USA. He is the author of Social Accountability and Selfhood (1984), Cultural Politics of Everyday Life: Social Constructionism, Rhetoric, and Knowing of the Third Kind (1993), and Conversational Realities: Constructing of Life through Language (1993). Currently, he is an Overseas Fellow at Churchill College, University of Cambridge, and Visiting Professor at the Swedish Institute for Work Life Research in Stockholm.

    Henderikus J. Starn is Professor of Psychology at the University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada. He is the founding and current editor of Theory & Psychology and writes on the history of the body in psychology.

    Acknowledgments

    For the many ways contributors' chapters pushed the bounds of the initial conception of this volume, and for their patience and kindness of spirit throughout its evolution, our thanks. We also extend our gratitude to our editor Ziyad Marar for his encouraging support and critical insights into changing directions on psychology's disciplinary compass.

    As the first editor of this volume, I thank my co-editor John Shotter for his guidance and assistance, many thought-inspiring conversations, and enlivening contributions to the introductory chapter. I am also deeply indebted to Susan Henking whose sparkling intellect and mindful suggestions invigorated both the introduction and my own chapter. My gratitude also goes to Lee Quinby for her helpful comments on the introduction, as well as for her warm and enthusiastic support. Warmest thanks also to Elena Ciletti for her generous gift of art for the book cover. For his reassurances all along the way, and for giving hope to “the good” in academic life, I thank Jeffrey Greenspon. To Jill Morawski, my appreciation for making this project conceivable. And, lastly, I want to recognize Lloyd Strickland for being a constant source of ideas and discussion on social psychology, reminding me that sometimes tangents are the most direct route, and showing me time and again how to meet critical challenges with grace and intellectual courage.


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