“In summary, I do not have the same social position as others I work with so cannot, as with my experiences as a fast-food worker, objectify my experiences in the same way. Just as the ethnographer experiences the world of the research subject through his own categories of perception and dispositions (his habitus) and so can never truly experience the subjective world of the subject they research, I would be trying to see the world of the working-class (in this case more specifically “precariat”) worker through more middle-class eyes (my class position is difficult to articulate as will be explained later in the main series).” … More The Limits of Reflexivity | How Class Mobility Impedes Your Ability to Research
“Being reflexive means being conscious in a way that makes our normal practice, however much it felt like we were consciously doing it before, seem like unconscious. […] By analysing how I came to acquire the scholastic disposition and become academically successful we can look at the structures which led to this, so policy can encourage these types of results.
Biological transfer is, although stochastic and probabilistic, it is not absolutely deterministic. […] Our statistical techniques can never give us 100% certainty (if they did, we would have hard laws rather than statistical probabilities), human errors, or all the other kinds of problems associated with human research, we always face margins of errors” … More The Psychic Landscape of Social Class & My Cleft Habitus | Part 4: Some Reflexions & Notes on Habitus, Luck & Biological Capital
“This article is a critical commentary, hopefully also comically polemical, on an article by Dylan Riley, professor of sociology at UC Berkeley, written in the new journal Catalyst in Spring 2017. I think his article does an injustice to Bourdieu and those scholars that have continued to develop his sociology. It is an extremely long and thorough, although still not as thorough as it could be, article which I hope succeeds in at least combating Riley’s criticisms, many of which seem almost slanderous to me. I hope this article also provides a decent introduction to Bourdieu’s sociology for anyone interested. ” … More In Defense of Bourdieu | Critical Commentary on Dylan Riley’s “Bourdieu’s Class Theory” in new journal: Catalyst by Jacobin Magazine
“Blackmore is a hard determinist, or fatalist, meaning she believes that every action, including human action, has some cause going back to the start of the universe, which also means free will does not exist. Perhaps I was unable, in the short time I had, to explain my compatibilist position, which I believe follows from dialectical monism; however it seemed disingenuous for someone with academic authority to assert nomological determinism (fatalism) so confidently.” … More Personal Thoughts | September 2015 | BPS talk on Out-of-Body-Experiences; cherry-picking from religion; the arrogance of nu-atheist academics
“[…] One of the most beautiful truths of dialectical materialism is the realisation that consciousness is a product of material conditions- not the other way around. What this means is that our personality is a result of the environment in which we develop. […] Although our will is limited, denial of radical freedom is bad faith.” … More Personal Thoughts | August 2015 | Materialists should not blame individuals for their being, as their consciousness arises from their material conditions, but we should not forget radical freedom.
“[…] Scientists aren’t lacking in self-awareness. In fact, peer review, proof-reading, replication, falsification etc are among the key reasons as to why science has been doing so well for the past few centuries and show how seriously we take our endeavours. Yes admittedly there are those that abuse science to support their agenda but that is why we should actually investigate shady looking evidence instead of just making assumptions.” … More How do we develop scientific knowledge?
“This week, in a new open letter to the government, Nutt and many other esteemed intellectuals from universities around the country, the latest proposed policy, the Psychoactive Substances Bill, is criticised…” … More Call for Regulation rather than Criminalisation
“Homeopathic “medicine” takes substances that usually cause certain ailments and dilutes them to the point of being near indistinguishable from just water thus magically making them curative. I’d like to hope I’m preaching to the choir when telling university students that this stuff is nonsense but I was unaware that these kinds of “treatments” were available on the NHS.” … More The NHS shouldn’t be offering Homeopathy
“Now it seems a question of when, not if, the UK will choose to review policy and there is already a wealth of information ready for MPs to review.” … More UK Drug Policy needs reviewing
“In the field of mental health, the way we think about disease, diagnosis and recovery is still somewhat debated. Notably, the latest edition of the diagnostic and statistical manual, DSM-V, by the American Psychiatric Association, came under heavy criticism when it was released, in part due to its lack of precision when defining many disorders.” … More Making mental health diagnoses clearer by making the logic of diagnosis fuzzier