File spoon-archives/bhaskar.archive/bhaskar_2003/bhaskar.0309, message 46

Date: Tue, 30 Sep 2003 16:19:32 +0100
Subject: Re: BHA: Re: A Dictionary of Critical Realism--Area Surveys

Hi Brad, all,

Many thanks for your helpful and encouraging comments.

In addition to *A Dictionary of Critical Realism* (assuming it serves 
the purpose I have in mind for it, viz. as a work of reference that 
established CR scholars as well as novices will find useful) I think we 

1. A counterpart of Collier, Andrew (1994) Critical Realism: an 
introduction to Roy Bhaskar's philosophy, London and New York: Verso in 
respect of Bhaskar's later philosophy, i.e. an accessible introduction 
to it, i.e. to DCR and the philosophy of meta-Reality (the dictionary 
won't cover the latter in any detail)

2. Bhaskar for Beginners, or some such.

Maybe I'll spin them off from work on the dictionary, or maybe others 
will write them. I agree with you that they're urgently needed.

I'll go as fast as I can to get the dictionary finished. I'm finding 
people's responses really useful in sorting out the basic parameters 
such that work can proceed apace.

I should mention that the dictionary is not happening on my initiative 
alone. The idea has been around for quite a while. Bhaskar has been an 
enthusiastic supporter as has the editorial board of the Routledge CR: 
Interventions series, who invited me to edit/write it.

I love the Einstein quip. It manages itself to put a very complex issue 
as simply as could be! I might pinch it for the dictionary.


Brad Rose <> writes
>Mervyn and List Members:
>I was very pleased to learn of the planned dictionary of Critical Realism.
>(Sorry it has taken me so long to respond to the original post.)  I think
>that the planned contents look very exciting and am sorry that I will have
>to wait until 2005, to read the book.  I am attempting to understand
>(through a halting, but gradually accreting process of reading) the
>meaning/implications of dialectical critical realism,--both for analyzing
>and comprehending the social world (I am a sociologist), and for designing
>and conducting applied social research.  Comments and suggestions for
>readings from members of this list have been very helpful,  and as I read
>and learn more in "the field", I feel that I am making progress (Thankfully)
>.  I must say however, that I have discovered, as a latecomer to this field
>of study that I've been impressed by the challenge of finding texts that are
>accessible and clear for the non-specialist (Some texts are, of course, far
>more accessible and transparent for the novice and non-philosopher, than
>others  I am a fan of Andrew Sayers work, for example.)  I also understand
>that DCR is a complex and continuingly developing perspective, and I guess I
>must also come to grips with the fact that Rome, of even Los Angeles, was
>not built in a day.   I must confess however, that I frequently  find myself
>wishing there were and book entitled "Critical Realism for Dummies" or "An
>Idiot's Guide to Dialectical Critical Realism."  (Although I am singularly
>foolish enough to admit this "in public", I  wonder if I am entirely alone
>among list members in feeling that I would find a short course in DCR, under
>"one roof"  to be a huge help in sorting through the complexities of this
>philosophy?)  In any case, while not at all suggesting that the
>above-mentioned Dictionary will be so elementary as to fulfil my longing for
>the lazy-persons guide to DCR, I remain eager to read the book and look
>forward to its publication.  Much to my chagrin, and as Einstein pointed
>out, "Things should be made as simple as possible, but not any simpler."
>Brad Rose

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