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View Diary: Are Jews white? (343 comments)

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  •  This sounds like an argument over semantics (2+ / 0-)
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    theran, mamamedusa

    You could very well say the "economy" doesn't exist in a tangible, physical sense. The difference is that nobody has ever mistaken the economy for anything but a social construct. Race, on the other hand, is rooted heavily in something people have traditionally perceived as a physical, objectively real category.

    •  I literally have no idea what this guy is saying (1+ / 0-)
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      mamamedusa

      The distinction of "soft" and "hard" is being made based on university structure, which is itself an obvious social construct.  (Normally people talk about soft and hard based on the kind of scientific methodology: you are "harder" if you prove theorems and "softer" the more you use qualitative methods.)

      Quasi-formal statements like:

      What is scientific about what sociologists do is the methodology they bring to bear in their inquiry -- not the topic they are studying.

      do not help me much either.  Race is a theoretical model that explains certain group behaviors.  Relativity is a theoretical model that explains certain physical phenomena.  Both are useful to practitioners in their respective fields.  

      The hard sciences have abandoned the very idea that race exists.  They have firmly concluded that it has no scientific basis.  

      The vast majority of the "hard sciences" never took up the question at all.  Only, presumably, biology did, and found it had nothing to say on the matter.

      "Dream for just a second and then do it!" -- Kolmogorov

      by theran on Thu Jun 18, 2009 at 10:18:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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