How do we transform theory into practice?..What sort of practice?
When I was a recreation service provider for people with intellectual
disabilities, I believe that theory underpinned my thinking when
writing policy - both social model theory of disability and leisure
theory which also addresses issues of freedom and choice and
discretion and social interaction. I feel that the policies of the service
were very much influenced by theory in the consolidation and
affirmations of beliefs about how practice should be. I believe that
engaging in theoretical ponderings gives one the latitude to think
creatively about practice and to approach practice with innovation
and the commitment to set goals for the service which align with
current thoughts on social theory. It provides direction on HOW to
do things. I cannot speak for policy and the state level however, what
policies and legislation do exist look more like social model than
anything else. So how did the knowledge make the transformation?
> In response to Michael's original post and Mairian's reply, I've been
> wondering about the following:
> from Michael's posting, I get the sense that he wants to place blame
> somewhere, and he questions whether or not it might lie with academics who
> undoubtedly are guilty at times of multiple, confusing and preponderous
> theory...but there's something more at stake here I think.
> Instead of pointing fingers at someone, instead of trying to problematize
> theory qua theory, he might (as we should do) have been trying to fault
> the difficulty of merging theory with practice. which is something that
> isn't simply very evident with things like philosophy and difference
> theories (like race class, gender, sexuality, and disbiltiy).
> So my question is thus:
> how is it exactly that theory moves into practice? or is it that somebody
> thinks something ought to be done, like the independent living movement,
> so they get busy and have a document drawn up, and then the theory that
> gives it all a name follows from that activity?
> I know what pragmatism's approach to this sort of question would be. But
> it still doesnt explain how one who theorizes can change policy. I suppose
> this question is merely reminiscent of the Ivory tower debate from a week
> ago....at any rate, I just wanted to post my devil's advocate response to
> michael's question.
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