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Salvador, Bahia, Brazil. E-mail: tatianearaujosantos yahoo. Professor, Univeridade Estadual da Bahia. E-mail: nildomascarenhas gmail. E-mail: cmmelo uol. The dialectical materialism is based on the understanding of the historical reality and of its contradictions, explaining social phenomena.

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Salvador, Bahia, Brazil. E-mail: tatianearaujosantos yahoo. Professor, Univeridade Estadual da Bahia. E-mail: nildomascarenhas gmail. E-mail: cmmelo uol. The dialectical materialism is based on the understanding of the historical reality and of its contradictions, explaining social phenomena.

From the statistical results, the contradictions between them and the literature review on the precariousness of work were identified. Then, based on the Marxist literature, other arguments were put forward in order to deepen the ascent to the explanation of the phenomenon. This fact made it possible to move away from the appearance of the numbers to understand the relationships between them and the work in nursing, as well as their contradictions.

After all, new problems demand new paradigms. The use of the quantitative and qualitative approach in the same research makes it possible to understand the object under study in a comprehensive way. Afinal, novos problemas demandam novos paradigmas.

Al final, nuevos problemas demandan nuevos paradigmas. Knowledge of the reality has always been a concern for mankind. Is it possible to know? How do we know? What we know is the truth? In search for answers, currents of thought and epistemologies were developed to guide the search for knowledge, such as the positivism, phenomenology and Marxist dialectics.

Each of these currents of thought interprets reality through paradigms, so as to enable the knowledge about it. Every current of thought elaborates its own method to the knowledge of reality. The word method originates from the Latin methodu , which means path.

Thus, the method would be the way traveled in search of knowledge and the production of truths. In the positivist perspective, the method advocates the separation between ends and means, between the object of knowledge and its explanation. Its application is strongly linked to research that operate by hypothesis and verification.

For example, when we deal with social objects of knowledge, whether these objects are relations between people, relations of production, etc. This explains why the choice of the epistemological matrix is as important as the choice of the object of study itself, since it is through the current of thought that it is possible to know the object in question.

Which theoretical matrix will enable me to know about my research object? The dialectical materialism, which is the philosophical basis of the Marxist theoretical current, starts from the understanding of the historical reality and its contradictions, seeking explanations for the phenomena of nature, society, or thought.

The dialectical materialism is the philosophy of Marxism. To this end, Engels took as its basis the mechanistic materialism of the Scientific Revolution and of the Enlightenment, and Hegel's idealistic dialectics, denying the mechanism of the first current and the idealism of the second. The combination of materialism and dialectics has changed both.

So, dialectically, the material and the ideal are opposites, but they coexist within a unit whose basis is material. The concrete reality, in the dialectical perspective, is contradictory and it is this conflict of opposites that provokes the movement of historical and progressive transformation, being these transformations the ones that provoke the qualitative novelty.

Thus, the combination of materialism and dialectics resulted in "a body of theory considered to be true in relation to the concrete reality as a whole, and conceived, in a sense, as scientific, as a kind of natural philosophy that generalizes the discoveries of science at the same time that it relies on them ".

The basic laws of the dialectical materialism are: a quantitative changes lead to revolutionary qualitative changes; b the unit of contraries, considering that the concrete reality is the union of contradictions; c the denial of the denial, in which, in the clash of opposites, one denials the other, which is then denied at a higher level of historical development, but that preserves aspects of the contraries that were denied thesis, antithesis and synthesis.

However, the relation man-context-reality is not direct, because it is realized through instruments that aid the human activity. Therefore, for every human activity, the mediation is necessary, and it is the technical instruments and language that embrace in themselves the generalizing concepts produced by human culture, which enable the mediation between man-man and man-context-reality. Having that said, in this article, we reflect on the use of the dialectical materialism for the analysis of quantitative data.

We start from the following statement: what should determine the analysis is not the form of data collection nor the type of data generated whether quantitative or qualitative , but what the researcher wants to know. We say that the dichotomy "quantitative research versus qualitative research" is false, since insisting on this dichotomy limits the production of knowledge.

In addition, it is feasible to use qualitative methods of analysis in research with a quantitative scope, as long as the limits on this type of use are determined. This reflection is divided into two parts: in the first one, the quantitative and qualitative paradigms of the research will be presented; and then the use of the dialectical materialism in quantitative data analysis.

The scientific revolutions occur with the construction and establishment of paradigms that will be replaced over time. The emergence of a new paradigm is a disruption in normal science, leading to a non-cumulative development of knowledge, since this science is cumulative, i. A discovery occurs when research guided by the existing paradigms formulates a new set of problems, which demand new paradigms for its explanation.

When this occurs, normal science is broken, enabling the construction of non-cumulative knowledge. The paradigm guides research as a pattern for its reproduction, but it does not provide rigid rules.

The adoption of paradigms makes science progress, however, the paradigms must be able to respond to the real problems. Thus, new paradigms and new theories emerge as the explanation becomes insufficient by the hegemonic paradigm or theory.

However, there has historically been a competition between quantitative and qualitative research paradigms. In most part of this dispute, the core is about which paradigm best explains reality, forgetting that these paradigms have different ontologies, epistemologies and axiologies. With respect to ontology, the quantitative approach is based on the unique reality that can be measured and validated by scientific principles; yet, the qualitative paradigm discusses the multiple realities built by society and which generate different meanings for different subjects.

The interpretation of this multiple reality depends on the worldview of the researcher. The differences in the evaluation aspect are about the value of research: for the quantitative approach, the research should be neutral, value-free; yet, the qualitative approach argues that research is influenced by the values of the researcher, in which neutrality is impossible.

These differences allow the creation of three conceptions of the world: objectivism, subjectivism and constructivism. It is worth mentioning that the two paradigms of research, quantitative and qualitative, are insufficient for a full understanding of the reality, since both have limits and potentialities 8.

Therefore, the good method will always be the one that allows a correct construction of the data and a reflection in the light of a theory. To do so, when the use of an approach is insufficient for the knowledge of the reality, the cited authors recommend their joining with another approach.

In relation to the integration of quantitative and qualitative approaches in the construction of research, this can happen in three ways: Predominance, Juxtaposition or Dialogue. In the Predominance, the study gives priority to one of the methods, commonly the quantitative and the qualitative method appear as a preliminary or subsequent step of the quantitative study. In the Juxtaposition, there is not a predominance of approaches, but an amalgamation of both. And finally, in the Dialogue, the interaction between the different approaches is built from the stage of research design.

So, for these studies, the interdisciplinary perspective or triangulation are suitable. It is worth mentioning that the amalgamation of approaches is not an anarchic procedure, given that the assumptions of each approach must be respected.

Thus, even in a quantitative approach, it is possible to adopt a method of quantitative and qualitative analysis. Among the perspectives previously presented, we affirm that this junction using the Dialogue form can produce profound results.

It is worth mentioning that the main limit of studies that seek the integration of approaches is the loss of sophistication and the detail of the methods used. On the other hand, the use of sophisticated mathematical resources for numerical calculations of all the coefficients can be totally fruitless if many facts of the problem remain unknown.

Understanding the positive dimension of the phenomena requires cross-complementarity, which stems from the shared meanings arising through speech". Thus, the barriers between the quantitative and qualitative approaches need to be demystified. The mixed method research has made this deconstruction possible to a large extent.

And, although the design of the research is not using a mixed method, the junction of the methods of the two approaches is possible. However, this demands from the researcher the deconstruction of the ways of producing knowledge. Such demand is a challenge for researchers that adopt one of the paradigms: for the ones that follow the quantitative approach, to recognize that numbers are not capable of disclosing all the reality, that not all the facts can be measured and that the use of methods that count and enumerate does not guarantee that this is the most faithful approach of reality.

For those who follow the qualitative approach, it is advisable: a not to ignore the numbers as a part of the reality; b to identify, in the quantitative methods, its potential of explanation; and c to recognize that a part of reality can be measured. The philosophical approach of the dialectical materialism has as its assumption the capture of the movement, the relations and the existing contradictions in the object of study.

Thus, to be understood, reality presents itself as a synthesis of multiple determinations that have been changing historically and socially. In the dialectical materialist conception, the empirical world allows us to know apparent manifestations of reality. However, the essence of the empirical world is not explicitly present in its immediate manifestation, being in need of mediations and of the knowledge of basic internal contradictions.

Therefore, the construction of knowledge by the dialectical materialism is conducted in a procedural way through the unveiling of the movement and the contiguous relations to the object of study. The experience in the use of the dialectical materialism to analyze quantitative data occurred in a research that has as its object the precariousness of the work in nursing at state public hospitals. Bourdieu states that the precarization is a new type of domination, based on the generalization of insecurity, with the aim of compelling workers to submit themselves and to accept exploitation.

Still from Druck's perspective, today we are experiencing a retreat from the role of the State regarding the social protection of workers, the loss of rights that have been conquered, the reduction of stable employment, the flexibilization of the working hours, the weakening of unions, and an even greater consequence: the weakening of social ties.

Based on this, in order to study the precariousness of work, it is necessary to focus on the social relations between workers and employers and also on the material conditions in which this relationship takes place. The precariousness of work can, at the same time, be measured and observed in its multiple relationships, as it is a phenomenon of appearances and essences. A second important point is that the precariousness of work is a complex, multi-determined phenomenon and, in the field of nursing, it is a relatively recent object of study.

Furthermore, the use of the dialectical materialism to the analysis of the results from quantitative data made it possible to uncover the precariousness of work in several layers of the phenomenon, deepening its understanding beyond the statistical analysis that was used.

It is important to remember: the object of study, the approach and the method of analysis, although stemming from different paradigms, complement each other. The dialectical materialism, even if used for data analysis, is not restricted to this use: all the elaboration of the research, from the conception of the project to the final report, made use of the founding characteristics of the dialectical materialism: movement, contradiction, interim syntheses, a clash of opposing forces and totality.

Following this logic, the concepts capable of explaining the reality revealed by the data were used as they were demanded. This form of textual construction was chosen because Marx argues that the categories to be studied do not need to appear according to their historical order, but must be presented according to the internal relations of their essential determinations within the general framework of society on which the object is analyzed, in this case, the Brazilian bourgeois capitalist society.

Concepts, from the dialectical materialist point of view, are relations in a certain totality. The totality "means a set of parts, articulated among themselves, with a certain order and hierarchy, permeated by contradictions and mediations and in constant process of effectiveness.

Its methodological importance is founded precisely on the fact that it is a category that characterizes reality in itself". Thus, as a methodological principle, totality tells us that nothing can be understood in isolation and, therefore, one must aim at the whole and the parts, their relationships, ruptures and contradictions.

This was produced by establishing relationships between the responses obtained for the same variable by the three categories of nursing workers nurses, technicians and nursing assistants ; or between different answers for the same variable, expressing or not the precariousness of the work; or revealing the contradictions between different responses to the same variable; or contradictions between the responses of different workers.

It is necessary to observe the hierarchy between the parts and the whole and its mediations. In this sense, the construction of the historical context of the object of study revealed the totality of the relations studied, since it addresses "in several levels, the spaces where larger groups of subjects and relations are found".

Although the focus was the totality of relations, it is necessary to bear in mind that this is a contradictory relationship: the part at the same time reveals and hides the whole, and the whole does not appear as such in the part.

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Received: January 01, Published: ,. Citation: DOI:. Download PDF. Since , Brazil has been living with signs of a democratic rupture that ended the previous virtuous cycle of economic growth with social inclusion. In addition, the resumption of the neoliberal prescription has been destructive of social and labor rights, concomitant with high unemployment and generalization of precarious jobs. The connection of what occurs in Brazil with the more general transformations in the world of work allows us to broaden the context in which current capitalism favors the attack on Brazilian social and labor rights. As a result, there are reactions that seek to gather forces that are not always sufficient to face the downgrading of living and working conditions.

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Skip to search form Skip to main content You are currently offline. Some features of the site may not work correctly. DOI: Among the most pressing problems concerning production and consumption today lies the tendency towards obsolescence of the use value of goods, which on the one hand implies the generalization of the capacity to generate value and, on the other, the expansion of its destructive potential. Accumulation of capital demands that the exchange value of goods impose itself over their useful effect, forcing their constant and ever faster replacement in the market. View PDF.

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