Which of the following is an example of a socially constructed entity?
What is social construction?
What is the relationship between social construction and physical/biological characteristics?
Understanding Social Construction: Examples and Explanations
- Social construction refers to entities or phenomena that exist and continue to exist because of societal factors such as the way people think, talk, and conceptualize the world.
- Socially constructed entities or phenomena are real and have causes and effects, but are not solely objective physical, chemical, or biological entities or events.
- Money is a classic example of a socially constructed entity, as it holds value and allows for exchange, but its intrinsic value as a piece of paper is minimal and its value is determined by societal norms and regulations.
- Disability can also be considered a socially constructed concept, as what is considered a disability is dependent on societal norms and expectations around what is considered normal or able-bodied.
- Social construction does not negate the importance of physical or biological characteristics, as they still play a role in determining what is considered socially constructed.
- Social construction extends to language, as the meanings of words and sentences are determined by societal use and agreement.
- Social construction can imbue physical objects with normative and ethical properties, such as disabled parking spaces.
- Social construction does not mean that anything goes, as physical characteristics and limitations still play a role in determining what is considered socially constructed.
- Extreme anti-realist or idealist views that everything is socially constructed are not widely accepted, as they do not account for the objective physical reality that exists independently of human interaction.
- Social construction is compatible with a broadly realist view of reality, as it allows for the existence of different kinds of entities with different metaphysical stories.
- The metaphysics and ontology of socially constructed entities will be explored in a follow-up video.
- The philosophy of social construction is a current area of research in social philosophy, particularly in regards to gender and disability.
Test your knowledge on the concept of social construction with our quiz! Explore examples and explanations of socially constructed entities and phenomena, such as money and disability, and learn how societal factors shape our understanding of the world. Discover how social construction relates to language, ethics, and physical reality, and delve deeper into the philosophy of this current area of research in social philosophy. Take our quiz to see how much you know about understanding social construction!
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