The social construction of psychology’s Image —as well as of any other corpus of scientific knowledge is an expressions of modern societies’ efforts to regulate human life-worlds through their social institutions. Modern societies nourish the development of systems of symbolic arenas for persons’ actions within social roles (e.g., the military, tax collectors, economy, law, engineering, etc.). These constructed social realities enable social organisms of any level of generality—local community, region, country, inter-governmental organizations, etc.-- not only to regulate the various domains of social life, but simultaneously construct the substantiations for their own existence and power roles. As far as psychology is concerned, one can see the scientific and professional development of such a domain as the expression of - and the response to - the very fundamental semiotic need of believing the social and relational world are transformable as a consequence of human action. From this point of view, requiring the intervention of a psychologist – more generally, associate the psychological image to a specific domain of experience - is a constructive (even if not explicit and not intentional) act of sensemaking, contributing to shape social world. Every domain of scientific knowledge develops in dialectic with such a starting point, acquiring more and more autonomy insofar as it succeeds in elaborating own specific way of modelling and conceptualizing own objects. Doing so, scientific knowledge can progressively reach ever greater distance from the naïve point of view that, for the other side, triggers and nourishes it. This differentiation is never complete. Yet, some domains of scientific thought - i.e. physics - have been able to develop own syntax and semantics generating a specific way of looking, in last analysis an idiosyncratic world quite far from the world of naïve experience. Psychology does not enjoy such condition of distancing. As matter of fact, from a side, psychology deals with issues broadly overlapping with daily experience of people - feelings, desires, thoughts, communication exchanges, solving problem and decision making activities. Being in between everyday life phenomena and need for abstraction, psychology suffers from an epistemological weakness that hinders its distancing of making sense of psychological issues from that of the naïve glance. Basically, such weakness is in the following contradiction-- psychology (especially “mainstream” psychology) tends to think of itself as an empirical system of knowledge, insofar as dealing with object defined by the common sense (first of all in terms of social pattern of behaviours/feelings) rather than in any theoretical way. In other words, psychology focuses on explicans, using as starting point and ground the naïve construction of objects - i.e. the explicandum. Moreover, as consequence of this epistemological weakness, psychology as a scientific and professional system of activity can not rely on broadly shared general and meta-theoretical models of interventions, enabling psychologist to define what (i.e on which object-phenomena) and why (i.e. in order and according to which client’s developmental process) they do act. Psychology has a lot of techniques and instruments, generally specific for single domain/system of client (psychotherapy, community, organizational, educational field…), but not a strategic map of its function. All this means that psychology is opened to the pressure of the commonsense, not being able to regulate it, rather being regulated by the social demand, therefore by the images of the scientific-professional system that such demand carries with itself. As consequence, the Images of psychology/psychologist reflects more the being in the world of naïve/clients than the functional symbolization of the condition, the opportunities and the goals associable to the scientific-professional system. Aims of the project and their scientific value The project aims at depicting and analyzing the Images of psychology and psychologist’s role throughout the world, in their content and in connections with the cultural dynamic nourishing them. This goal can be depicted in terms of the following four general question. 1) In so far as the images of psychology/gist are not autonomous (i.e. are non regulated and tied by the functional content of the scientific-professional system), then which domains and which processes of the social sensemaking are involved in the various images? In other words: which cultural dynamics are involved in – therefore depictable through the study of – how people see psychology/gist? 2) Which semiotic use does the various cultures make of psychology/gist as a generalized differentiating sign? In other words: how psychology/gist’s images works as a symbolic resource: under which condition, with which kind of flexibility/polysemy 3) Which are the communicational and sensemaking processes and practices (mass-media, institutional organization, law, internal organization of professional networking, popular press…) mediating such dynamics 4) Which is the relationship between the naïve’s Image of psychology/gist and the psychologists’ ones? Answering to above question offers a strategic knowledge useful at various levels: A) as a source of relevant data for studying cultural dynamic of the commonsense B) as a way of dealing with the epistemological status of the discipline, in so far as one can deem that the not autonomy of the image are a sign of its weak theoretical ground C) as a contribute for the development of a general (psychological) theory of psychological intervention - requiring to understand the processes mediating the semiotic relationship between social demand and professional practices (here a fundamental issue is to understand – in the various cultural context – which aspect of shared symbolization has to be treated not as for grant by the professional models of intervention) D) as a map usable in order to enucleate aims and path of cultural development of the relationship between psychological system and society. Moreover, the project aims at being a way of developing a collaborative repertoire of methodological and technical issue in the field of the cultural analysis of semiotic processes and representational content/structures. According to such an aim, the network will encourage the innovative proposal and exchange of research strategies among partecipants.

Collaborative Research Project The Psychological Images Transnational Analysis (PITA) Network / Salvatore, S. - (2008).

Collaborative Research Project The Psychological Images Transnational Analysis (PITA) Network

SALVATORE S
2008

Abstract

The social construction of psychology’s Image —as well as of any other corpus of scientific knowledge is an expressions of modern societies’ efforts to regulate human life-worlds through their social institutions. Modern societies nourish the development of systems of symbolic arenas for persons’ actions within social roles (e.g., the military, tax collectors, economy, law, engineering, etc.). These constructed social realities enable social organisms of any level of generality—local community, region, country, inter-governmental organizations, etc.-- not only to regulate the various domains of social life, but simultaneously construct the substantiations for their own existence and power roles. As far as psychology is concerned, one can see the scientific and professional development of such a domain as the expression of - and the response to - the very fundamental semiotic need of believing the social and relational world are transformable as a consequence of human action. From this point of view, requiring the intervention of a psychologist – more generally, associate the psychological image to a specific domain of experience - is a constructive (even if not explicit and not intentional) act of sensemaking, contributing to shape social world. Every domain of scientific knowledge develops in dialectic with such a starting point, acquiring more and more autonomy insofar as it succeeds in elaborating own specific way of modelling and conceptualizing own objects. Doing so, scientific knowledge can progressively reach ever greater distance from the naïve point of view that, for the other side, triggers and nourishes it. This differentiation is never complete. Yet, some domains of scientific thought - i.e. physics - have been able to develop own syntax and semantics generating a specific way of looking, in last analysis an idiosyncratic world quite far from the world of naïve experience. Psychology does not enjoy such condition of distancing. As matter of fact, from a side, psychology deals with issues broadly overlapping with daily experience of people - feelings, desires, thoughts, communication exchanges, solving problem and decision making activities. Being in between everyday life phenomena and need for abstraction, psychology suffers from an epistemological weakness that hinders its distancing of making sense of psychological issues from that of the naïve glance. Basically, such weakness is in the following contradiction-- psychology (especially “mainstream” psychology) tends to think of itself as an empirical system of knowledge, insofar as dealing with object defined by the common sense (first of all in terms of social pattern of behaviours/feelings) rather than in any theoretical way. In other words, psychology focuses on explicans, using as starting point and ground the naïve construction of objects - i.e. the explicandum. Moreover, as consequence of this epistemological weakness, psychology as a scientific and professional system of activity can not rely on broadly shared general and meta-theoretical models of interventions, enabling psychologist to define what (i.e on which object-phenomena) and why (i.e. in order and according to which client’s developmental process) they do act. Psychology has a lot of techniques and instruments, generally specific for single domain/system of client (psychotherapy, community, organizational, educational field…), but not a strategic map of its function. All this means that psychology is opened to the pressure of the commonsense, not being able to regulate it, rather being regulated by the social demand, therefore by the images of the scientific-professional system that such demand carries with itself. As consequence, the Images of psychology/psychologist reflects more the being in the world of naïve/clients than the functional symbolization of the condition, the opportunities and the goals associable to the scientific-professional system. Aims of the project and their scientific value The project aims at depicting and analyzing the Images of psychology and psychologist’s role throughout the world, in their content and in connections with the cultural dynamic nourishing them. This goal can be depicted in terms of the following four general question. 1) In so far as the images of psychology/gist are not autonomous (i.e. are non regulated and tied by the functional content of the scientific-professional system), then which domains and which processes of the social sensemaking are involved in the various images? In other words: which cultural dynamics are involved in – therefore depictable through the study of – how people see psychology/gist? 2) Which semiotic use does the various cultures make of psychology/gist as a generalized differentiating sign? In other words: how psychology/gist’s images works as a symbolic resource: under which condition, with which kind of flexibility/polysemy 3) Which are the communicational and sensemaking processes and practices (mass-media, institutional organization, law, internal organization of professional networking, popular press…) mediating such dynamics 4) Which is the relationship between the naïve’s Image of psychology/gist and the psychologists’ ones? Answering to above question offers a strategic knowledge useful at various levels: A) as a source of relevant data for studying cultural dynamic of the commonsense B) as a way of dealing with the epistemological status of the discipline, in so far as one can deem that the not autonomy of the image are a sign of its weak theoretical ground C) as a contribute for the development of a general (psychological) theory of psychological intervention - requiring to understand the processes mediating the semiotic relationship between social demand and professional practices (here a fundamental issue is to understand – in the various cultural context – which aspect of shared symbolization has to be treated not as for grant by the professional models of intervention) D) as a map usable in order to enucleate aims and path of cultural development of the relationship between psychological system and society. Moreover, the project aims at being a way of developing a collaborative repertoire of methodological and technical issue in the field of the cultural analysis of semiotic processes and representational content/structures. According to such an aim, the network will encourage the innovative proposal and exchange of research strategies among partecipants.
File allegati a questo prodotto
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11573/1320685
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus ND
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? ND
social impact