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Reexamining Epistemological Debates in Social Work through American Pragmatism

Reexamining Epistemological Debates in Social Work through American Pragmatism This article presents theoretical and historical analysis of the intersections between social work knowledge and practice and the philosophical tradition of American pragmatism. Reviewing current epistemological debates in social work, as well as the historical dimensions those debates often take on, I argue that engagement with pragmatist thought and the intersecting histories of Progressive Era pragmatists and social reformers can effectively address persistent epistemological and practical concerns in the field of social work. I first analyze contemporary articulations of pragmatism and identify key tenets of pragmatist thought, then go on to present an examination of notable inclusions and exclusions in historical accounts of Progressive Era pragmatists and social reformers. In doing so, I consider connections to historical accounts of the social work profession, as well as the implications of these histories for contemporary pragmatist thought and practice both within and beyond the field of social work. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Social Service Review University of Chicago Press

Reexamining Epistemological Debates in Social Work through American Pragmatism

Social Service Review , Volume 93 (4): 32 – Dec 1, 2019

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Publisher
University of Chicago Press
Copyright
© 2019 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0037-7961
eISSN
1537-5404
DOI
10.1086/706255
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article presents theoretical and historical analysis of the intersections between social work knowledge and practice and the philosophical tradition of American pragmatism. Reviewing current epistemological debates in social work, as well as the historical dimensions those debates often take on, I argue that engagement with pragmatist thought and the intersecting histories of Progressive Era pragmatists and social reformers can effectively address persistent epistemological and practical concerns in the field of social work. I first analyze contemporary articulations of pragmatism and identify key tenets of pragmatist thought, then go on to present an examination of notable inclusions and exclusions in historical accounts of Progressive Era pragmatists and social reformers. In doing so, I consider connections to historical accounts of the social work profession, as well as the implications of these histories for contemporary pragmatist thought and practice both within and beyond the field of social work.

Journal

Social Service ReviewUniversity of Chicago Press

Published: Dec 1, 2019

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