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This message can be for all anthropologists who are thinking about occupational therapy

Posted Jan 14 2009 8:57pm

I have often stated that the inter-activity generated as a result of this blog is endlessly entertaining to me. I just received this wonderful note about my statement on the blog that reads "This product is sold by weight, and not by volume" :

Hi Chris

Is that a little witticism referring to Gregory Bateson and his little metalogue on knowledge “How much do you know”? I’m soon to graduate with a BA in Anthropology. I’m thinking of pursuing a MS in OT I have a very holisitic view of communication and life; they are one and the same in my book. Do you have any advice or recommendations? I’m very interested in communication theory from bio-semiotic-cybernetic perspective. Hope to hear from you soon.

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And my response... (slightly edited)

Thank you for your note – although I chuckled at your question and then started thinking about the act of deconstructing my own writing, and then got all tripped up on subject-object perception about what goes on my blog, and then I got a headache. <?xml:namespace prefix = o />

I am certain that some of these studies (anthropology, semiotics, cybernetics) belong in occupational therapy but I am not sure if occupational therapy belongs in them. OT is such a pragmatic science – a day to day methodology for understanding and taking action on complexities of individualism-disability-society. I am afraid that we may be so pragmatic that many street level practitioners would not be interested if they were asked to read a study on the carceral archipelago. That reality might cause a sociologist or a linguist or a systems person or an anthropologist to become bored. Sometimes.

We had this debate in our field, hidden in the literature as a conversation about occupational science and occupational therapy. Funny how this came back for a visit in the form of an email.

Still, the occupational therapy field needs you, as do many people. If that calls to you, please go sign up.

And keep me posted on your trajectory.

Warm regards,

Chris

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