Tuesday, May 19, 2015
XXIV - 'SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION': A SECULAR THEOLOGY
Google and oakes.ucsc.edu offer the definition: "Social construction is how society groups people and how it privileges certain groups over others. For example, you are a woman or a man because society tells you that you are, not because you choose to be. Simple as that. Just like it tells you what race you're classified as and what social class you belong in."
While the definition contrasts the individual MIND (the "you" of the definition) with a collection of MINDS ("society"), both the "you" and the "society" present as free-standing mental/MIND phenomena unrelated to any BODY.
Prima facie, Social Construction countenances the MIND and ignores, as best it can, the BODY.
In Mark Johnson's The Meaning of the Body (cf., my POST # XXIII) his omission of a body's genitalia from his consideration of the meaning of the body - if applied to both the "you" and the "society" of the definition - is compatible with Social Construction theory (that, in any event, tries to pretend away the whole body); but invites disqualification of his thesis.
Society, as an omnipotent Social Constructor, seems to have become a kind of disembodied Deity in a quasi-theology underlying the contemporary cult of 'Political Correctness'; and such an entity is very reminiscent of the traditional omnipotent disembodied God of 'Christendom'.
As with religions in general, for both belief systems (ie, Social Construction and Christianity) the reality of the human BODY and male-female physical procreative interaction is/was a problem to be ignored, pretended away or otherwise dealt with (e.g., historically, 'burning the body at the stake').