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Social Construction-Beyond the Obvious

Social Construction

Social constructions are the ideas that people hold because they learn from others in society. In other words, they are ideas passed on from one person to another; in most cases, they are not based on proof. The notable thing about these ideas is that they differ across distinct societies. Accordingly, a generalized belief about something in one community can differ entirely from a generalized idea about the same thing in another (Ponizovskiy et al., 2019). For instance, in one society, a specific ethnic group might be considered to be academically gifted. Yet, in another community, that same ethnic group may be believed to have a much lower IQ. This example reaffirms the information from Ross and Nisbett (2011) that social construction is formulated ideas by a society that do not conform with reality. For instance, the idea that women are emotionally and physically weak is a social construct because it is a generalized idea passed on and does not rely on proven facts. Also, it is essential to note that social construction is often driven by unconscious biases, as mentioned in Turnbull’s speech (n.d.). Hence, social construction is the process where society generalizes a notion and makes it popular even though it may be untrue.

It is difficult to conclude that blindness is socially constructed since being blind is a condition. In other words, people who are not blind consider those unable to see as blind (Symeonidou & Demetriou, 2022). However, a critical examination of blindness offers a description that may reveal that blindness is a social construct. Firstly, blind people can do everything that people who are not blind can do. They can read through brail and sometimes use their senses to move around. Therefore, if a blind person can have the same capabilities as those who are not blind and sometimes can even have better abilities, then blindness is a social construct. Blindness can also be considered a social construct because there is nothing lesser in a blind person (Symeonidou & Demetriou, 2022). One thing that should also be remembered is that blindness can also be considered a name given to a condition, thus pocking holes into the claim above.

This study used no questionnaires since it relied on analyzing and examining language and artifacts. As such, this study was conducted in Cyprus through an examination of language to determine social ideologies linked to blindness. Artifacts like stamps, Facebook posts, and television adverts were used along with quotes from the Greek culture to understand the culture’s perspective or interpretation of blindness. What emerged from this analysis was that blindness in Cyprus is a social construct because people who are blind are considered as people who are disabled and cannot live alone in society without help from those with eyes.

Women are socially constructed because there are several generalized ideas about women. For instance, society still believes that only women cry when they are in emotional pain. Most communities still believe that women are weak, so there are some jobs that they cannot do, especially those that involve physical energy. Women are considered motherly and are believed to be the best housekeepers and nurses. This is a social construct because men can also do housekeeping jobs and cry when in emotional pain. When considering its definition, social construction involves generalizing unproven ideas (Ponizovskiy et al., 2019). Therefore, this description fits into the given example.

References

Ponizovskiy, V., Grigoryan, L., Kühnen, U., & Boehnke, K. (2019). Social construction of the value-behavior relation. Frontiers in Psychology, 10, 934. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00934

Ross, L. & Nisbett, R. (2011). The person and the situation: Perspectives of social psychology. London: Pinter & Martin Ltd. Second edition.

Symeonidou, S., & Demetriou, K. N. (2022). Blindness as a social construct in Cyprus. In Finding blindness (pp. 28–39). https://doi.org/10.4324/9781003275060-5

Turnbull, H. (n.d.) Inclusion, exclusion, illusion and collusion. TEDx Talk. Retrieved from https://www.sussex.ac.uk/education/cheer/researchprojects/rise/trainingmodule/toolkit/bias

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Question 


Instructions
Case Study
Listen to Part 1 and Part 2 of the podcast Invisibilia, then answer the following. https://www.npr.org/2015/01/23/379134306/batman-pt-1
https://www.npr.org/2015/01/23/379134701/batman-pt-2

Briefly summarize how you would define “social construction” in everyday language.

Then discuss why you think blindness is or is not socially constructed.

Can you think of another situation or category of person that may be socially constructed? Does your definition apply?

Social Construction-Beyond the Obvious

Social Construction-Beyond the Obvious

Your post should:

Explain why you think something is socially constructed

Maximum four paragraphs

Provide references.

Use your own words (i.e. no quotes, and do not plagiarize)

Case Studies are designed to enhance your critical thinking and research skills.

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