Friday, September 9, 2016

The purposes of metatheory

Following up on this post, and the previous post linked therein, in that light I provide Stein's reflection on the purposes of metatheory in Metatheory for the 21st Century, wherein he sees metatheory as indicative of postformal operations that

"traffic in constructs that lead beyond both nature and humanity; they provide languages designed to recreate humanity’s understanding of itself. This is discussed below as the normative function of meta-theoretical endeavors. Meta-theory has inherited from philosophy the function of providing for humanity’s languages of self-transformation—which is the task of leading humanity beyond itself by re-articulating a shared vision of human nature and the nature of the universe" (7).

It does seem to support the notion that engagement with metatheory itself promotes individual transformation to postformal operations. However he does admit that his thesis could be "merely a reconstruction of a certain type of meta-theory. It may be that what I have in mind is not even meta-theory, but a kind of philosophy" (5).

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