ߢThis is an admirable book which can be recommended to students with confidence, and is likely also to become an indispensable source of reference for those researching fact constructionߣ ࡆ Discourse & Society. How is reality manufactured? The idea of social construction has become a commonplace of much social research, yet precisely what is constructed, and how, and even what constructionism means, is often unclear or taken for granted. In this major work, Jonathan Potter offers a fascinating tour of the central themes raised by these questions. Representing Reality overviews the different traditions in constructionist thought.

Working Up Representations

Working up representations

In Chapter 4 I introduced the distinction between the epistemological orientation and the action orientation of descriptions. This was meant to capture the difference between elements in a description which work to establish it as factual or neutral and elements that are orientated to some action or range of actions. One of the themes of this book has been to show that the epistemological orientation is not an abstract feature of descriptions decided by their relationship to some reality, but is a practical and rhetorical accomplishment. It is an order of activity in itself. I have now discussed a range of procedures through which the factual status of descriptions can be built up or undermined; that is, how descriptions are ...

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