ERIC Number: ED222400
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Positivist Philosophy and Research on Human Spatial Behavior.
Positivist methodology, with an emphasis on quantification and measurement, is the most effective approach to behavioral research in geography and is the only means to obtain valid knowledge. Although initial behavioral research in geography was centered on positivist tradition, many of the classic tenets have been replaced. Tendencies toward physicalist and reductionist interpretations of human behavior have lost most of their strength, and the image of the scientist as the passive observer of an objective reality has given way to studies based on the interaction between the researcher and the conscious human subject. Finally, the traditional positivist separation of fact and value is no longer possible to maintain. What remains after these tenets have been disposed of, however, are standards of clarity, consistency, and rigor in the development of argument and the conduct of inquiry. This analytic mode of discourse offers the closest one may come to a public, interpersonal, intersubjective mode of communication. Adoption of a positivist mode of thought has enabled geographers to interact more freely with researchers in many other disciplines. (KC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Logical Positivism
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (San Antonio, TX, April 25-28, 1982).