The entanglement of the stuff and practice of human service work: A case for complexity

Emslie, M 2016, 'The entanglement of the stuff and practice of human service work: A case for complexity', Social Work and Social Sciences Review, vol. 18, no. 2, pp. 25-42.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Attached Files
Name Description MIMEType Size
n2006062140.pdf Published Version application/pdf 150.89KB
Title The entanglement of the stuff and practice of human service work: A case for complexity
Author(s) Emslie, M
Year 2016
Journal name Social Work and Social Sciences Review
Volume number 18
Issue number 2
Start page 25
End page 42
Total pages 18
Publisher Whiting and Birch
Abstract The fact that social welfare professions including social work, youth work and community work deal with the lives and relationships of human beings is far from controversial. What is contentious is that in light of increasing intellectual work on the nature of social practices there is a failure in the human services literature to adequately examine the interdependencies and entanglements between conceptualisations of the stuff that the helping professions deals with and understandings of practice. This article examines the nexus and mediations between the phenomena and practice of social service work. The case is made that human services and the human beings they deal with are often imagined and represented in one-dimensional, unambiguous, calculable and orderable ways that align with neo-liberal inspired and technical approaches to practice. I argue that these accounts are inadequate and I suggest that practices of care and the people engaged in such practices should be constituted as complex, unpredictable, wicked and emergent. A key to good practice in the people professions is acknowledging and attending to this complexity and aporia.
Subject Social Theory
Counselling, Welfare and Community Services
Social Philosophy
Keyword(s) human services
complexity
good practice
ISSN 1746-6105
Versions
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: Scopus Citation Count Cited 0 times in Scopus Article
Access Statistics: 241 Abstract Views, 28 File Downloads  -  Detailed Statistics
Created: Fri, 29 Jul 2016, 07:37:00 EST by Catalyst Administrator
© 2014 RMIT Research Repository • Powered by Fez SoftwareContact us