Historical Social Research

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33.1 - Discourse Analysis

HSR Vol. 33 (2008) No. 1: Special Issue: Discourse Analysis

Andrea D. Bührmann, Rainer Diaz-Bone, Encarnación Gutiérrez Rodriguez, Gavin Kendall, Werner Schneider & Francisco J. Tirado (Hrsg.): Discourse Analysis in the Social Sciences

The term ‘discourse’ describes the ordered and wellregulated processes of (re)producing sets of propositions in and with which the social construction of ‘truth’ takes place in terms of implementing valid knowledge about reality. Discourses—understood as forms of practice in social fields or social spheres— aim for the (re)production of collectively shared orders of knowledge as ‘objective’ (intersubjective) realities.

Using this notion of discourse, ‘discourse analysis’ has boomed particularly in the social sciences but also in other disciplines during the last 15 years. Thus discourse analysis comprises a relatively heterogeneous and evolving scientific field mainly located within qualitative social research. It generally refers to a perspective introduced by Michel Foucault in several ways, but also extends to a wider area of approaches, directions and traditions of reception of discourse research.

The collected papers in this special issue of HSR attend to methodological discussions of various research approaches as well as to research strategies and their application in the research process. This volume gives an introductory view of theoretical concepts, methodological foundations and research practices in discourse analysis.

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