Practice and the Human Sciences

The Case for a Judgment-Based Practice of Care

By Donald E. Polkinghorne

Subjects: Education
Series: SUNY series in the Philosophy of the Social Sciences
Paperback : 9780791462003, 231 pages, August 2004
Hardcover : 9780791461990, 231 pages, August 2004

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Table of contents

Preface

1. INTRODUCTION

 

The Technical-Judgment Practice of Controversy
Understanding Practice

 

2. TECHNOLOGY AND TECHNIFICATION

 

Techne
The Effect of Technology on Culture
Technology and Technical-Rational Practice
Technical-Rational Practice
Critique of the Technified Culture

 

3. PRACTICE AND CULTURE

 

Two-Term Explanations of Practice
Practice Theory
Summary

 

4. THE REALMS OF PRACTICE

 

Form and Flux
The Realms of Practice
The Practitioner
The Human Sciences and Practical Knowing

 

5. TECHNE AND PHRONESIS

 

The Fusion of Horizons
Techne (Science) versus Tuche (Luck)
Plato's Science of Living
Aristotle's Phronesis and Practical Action

 

6. EMBODIED REASONING

 

Epstein's Experiential Thinking
Lakoff and Johnson's Embodied Rationality
Gendlin's Experiencing
Damasio's Embodied-Enactive Model
Conclusion

 

7. REFLECTIVE UNDERSTANDING AND PRACTITIONER JUDGMENT

 

Practice and the Background
Reflective-Understanding Reasoning
Conclusion

 

8. A CASE STUDY: PSYCHOTHERAPY

 

The First Phase: 1890–1950
The Second Phase: 1950–1990
The Third Phase: 1990–the Present

 

References

Index

Argues that the technical model of practice has limited applicability for the practices of care (teaching, nursing, social work, and psychotherapy).

Description

Teachers, nurses, psychotherapists, and other practitioners of care are under pressure to substitute specific, prescribed techniques in place of using their own judgment. Donald E. Polkinghorne assembles the case for the return to judgment-based practice for the professions that engage in direct person-to-person interaction with those they serve. Set in the larger context of the technification of society, Polkinghorne draws from Weber, Heidegger, Ihde, Bourdieu, de Certeau, and other philosophers to trace the advancing power of the technological worldview in Western culture and uses Aristotle, Dewey, and Gadamer to help make his case that we should be doing things very differently.

Donald E. Polkinghorne is Emeritus Professor and Chair of Counseling Psychology at the Rossier School of Education at the University of Southern California. He is the author of Methodology for the Human Sciences: Systems of Inquiry and Narrative Knowing and the Human Sciences, both also published by SUNY Press.