Paradigm and Geographical Thoughts: Attributes of Paradigm

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Geographical Thought

  • Interaction b/w philosophical viewpoint and methodological approach

  • Philosophy – Samuel’s Humanistic Geography, Peet’s Radical geography

  • Methodological – Hartshorne’s Nature of Geography, James’s All Possible Worlds

  • Methodological – logical explanation, internally coherent


  • Constellation of beliefs, values, techniques shared by community

  • Kuhn – Structure of Scientific Revolutions – 1962 – 21 different ways

  • Master man – 3 ways

    • Metaphysical (global or gestalt view) – concerns, where to look and what to discover

    • Sociological (concrete scientific achievement)

    • Artefact or Construct (textbook or instrument)- problem solution paradigm - subject specific nature

  • Disciplinary matrix for paradigms – common to practitioners as ordered set of elements required for individual specifications

  • Kuhn’s single or multiple paradigm was not clear

  • Metaparadigm and Sociological are prior to theory

  • Theories are not paradigm but one aspect of paradigms

Master Man’S Paradigms

  • Non-Paradigm – no paradigm & subject matter cannot be differentiated

  • Multiple Paradigm – many paradigms compete – question the basic assumption of those who accept other paradigms (criticized as she regards them as stage in emergence of paradigmatic science)

  • Dual Paradigm – led to emergence of single paradigm, 2 paradigms compete for control.

  • Non-paradigm -> dual paradigm -> single paradigm

  • It is impossible to be unidirectional formulation

  • Move from pre-paradigmatic -> multiple paradigmatic -> single/dual paradigmatic

Attributes of Paradigm (Ritzer)

  • Exemplar (fundamentals) – Durkheim’s Rule of Sociological Method

  • Image of Subject (subject matter) – Social Structure & institutions

  • Theories – Structuralism – Functionalism

  • Methods – Questionnaires

  • Kuhn & Popper – nature of social relationships are actualized in real world

  • Not just knowledge that causes changes – it is caused by revolution and linkage of events

  • Paradigm A -> normal science (accumulate knowledge) -> anomalies -> crisis (discontent) > revolution -> paradigm B

Paradigm and Philosophy

  • Personal attitude towards life , does not shrink with difficult problems

  • Reflective thinking and logical inquiry

  • Critical evaluation of facts

  • Develop view about whole system

  • Logical analysis of language and clarification of remaining words

  • Philosophy – Comprehensive view, synthetic, synoptic, quality of nature , life as whole, combine and synthesis

  • Science – analytic, analyze whole into elements

  • Philosophy – speculative, descriptive, normative, analytical – evaluates what has been done and creates framework for research

  • Set of philosophies with sufficient communality of focus and approach and group of practitioners many constitute paradigms – multi-faceted topics in research.

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