Discrimination imbedded in social theory
British Sociological Association Annual Conference 2015
This paper seeks to underscore how present sociological characteristics favour the naturalizing of current discriminations. Starting with the example of the axiological discrimination between experts (observers) and the groups they themselves stratify (objects of study). Favouring the naturalization of the normal (i.e. objects of study whose behaviour is similar to that of the observers’) and of moralism (i.e. the implicit strangeness imbedded in the social theories and the classifications of the objects of study). Favouring the search for the causes of misery and violence in individual free will, evading the configurational co-responsibility of social conditions in the construction of the mechanisms and environments with which people live and to which they react. The dissimulation of intentions and socio-political views that legitimize institutional violence is one of the characteristics of our times. It is worthwhile remembering how the separation between the action and its representations, the nomination of those against whom violence may be exercised, is ancestral. What should the role of the social sciences be: simply to monitor stigmatized violence (its negative form) or to participate in the construction of violence as instrument of social orientation (sometimes positive others negative)?
social theory, violence, human nature, orientation processes, resilience