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Lecture 2

SOC 355 Lecture 2: Lecture 2
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5 Pages
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Department
Sociology
Course Code
SOC355H5
Professor
Ronit Dinovitzer

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Lecture 2
Expertise
Its what defines a profession
Professions are knowledge based occupation
They are claiming a particular knowledge that regular people don’t have
access to
This knowledge that they have is formalized – need to share it with other
who want to become like you (replicate it)
Use abstract principles to solve real problems
Abstract Knowledge
It is what professionals fight over when they claim they are professionals
Some one wins out in the end
It’s the fighting over abstract knowledge that sets professionals different
from occupations
Need to have a knowledge system that is governed by abstractions
You see ex in medicine and law
You have obesity and alcoholism etc. med prof trying to take over
Actual task of a profession are human problems
They deal with concrete problems
We need to agree – they need to sell to us that they are professionals who can
solve our problems
They work hard to do it
Diagnose, infer and treat – characteristics of what a professional does
Knowledge and social closure
You have to fight other away from knowledge and state your claim over it –
do it by a process called social closure
It is the way in which professionals maintain their status and knowledge
State has to give profession the authority to regulate itself
They fought for it and the state gave them this power
Knowledge of a prof is one that is certified and credentialed
State level social closure over expertise – it gives them ability to own that
knowledge (medical knowledge = doctors)
Suicide and Medical examiners
How is it that suicides are under reported
We know that there’s potentially different reasons why suicide is
underreported
Need to understand expertise and authority for answer
Med examiners protect their authority conservatively
Death investigators have authority over suicide determinations
In Canada, it is coroners
find more resources at oneclass.com
find more resources at oneclass.com
Coroners are doctors
They are not necessarily pathologists
Med exam are physicians and they are also pathologists
They are trained forensic pathologist – they determine the cause of death
They are doctors, not police
They have different expert knowledge
They are trained as doctors, not just in crime and law
They have different set of priorities
They have working knowledge of the crime scene
They don’t rely on expert witnesses – they are scientists at heart
Science is very important to them
Need to know that injury was self inflicted and intentional
They infer intent from different sources
They work inductively
There is no check list for suicide determination
It’s a decision they reach after mining all evidence – 51% rule = you need to
be over the threshold (more than positive) to determine suicide
Hard evidence is misleading (suicide notes)
They explain that they ultimate criteria is whether an examiner can be more
than positive – uncertainty = science wins
Professionalism helps explain things like suicide determination
They are also oriented towards law as well as science
Their allegiance is to science and law not policing
Expertise and Interpretation
The influence of relatives in this case is important
Cases where med exam even had evidence to call something a suicide due to
stigma and family pressure
Other influences also need to be taken into consideration = not just science
Epistemology
Public health officials have often thought that single vehicle accidents are
suicides
But not reported so
Pathologists argue not
We are not able to prove them as suicide scientifically
Their frame work is a particular medical legal stand work – they don’t care
about prevention
Their role is medical legal
Social Epi = public role
They have different priorities and different standards
EM act conservative because they have to protect their authority
Expertise of med prof is questioned by many
find more resources at oneclass.com
find more resources at oneclass.com

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Description
Lecture 2 Expertise • Its what defines a profession • Professions are knowledge based occupation • They are claiming a particular knowledge that regular people don’t have access to • This knowledge that they have is formalized – need to share it with other who want to become like you (replicate it) • Use abstract principles to solve real problems Abstract Knowledge • It is what professionals fight over when they claim they are professionals • Some one wins out in the end • It’s the fighting over abstract knowledge that sets professionals different from occupations • Need to have a knowledge system that is governed by abstractions • You see ex in medicine and law • You have obesity and alcoholism etc. med prof trying to take over • Actual task of a profession are human problems • They deal with concrete problems • We need to agree – they need to sell to us that they are professionals who can solve our problems • They work hard to do it • Diagnose, infer and treat – characteristics of what a professional does Knowledge and social closure • You have to fight other away from knowledge and state your claim over it – do it by a process called social closure • It is the way in which professionals maintain their status and knowledge • State has to give profession the authority to regulate itself • They fought for it and the state gave them this power • Knowledge of a prof is one that is certified and credentialed • State level social closure over expertise – it gives them ability to own that knowledge (medical knowledge = doctors) Suicide and Medical examiners • How is it that suicides are under reported • We know that there’s potentially different reasons why suicide is underreported • Need to understand expertise and authority for answer • Med examiners protect their authority conservatively • Death investigators have authority over suicide determinations • In Canada, it is coroners • Coroners are doctors • They are not necessarily pathologists • Med exam are physicians and they are also pathologists • They are trained forensic pathologist – they determine the cause of death • They are doctors, not police • They have different expert knowledge • They are trained as doctors, not just in crime and law • They have different set of priorities • They have working knowledge of the crime scene • They don’t rely on expert witnesses – they are scientists at heart • Science is very important to them • Need to know that injury was self inflicted and intentional • They infer intent from different sources • They work inductively • There is no check list for suicide determination • It’s a decision they reach after mining all evidence – 51% rule = you need to be over the threshold (more than positive) to determine suicide • Hard evidence is misleading (suicide notes) • They explain that they ultimate criteria is whether an examiner can be more than positive – uncertainty = science wins • Professionalism helps explain things like suicide determination • They are also oriented towards law as well as science • Their allegiance is to science and law not policing Expertise and Interpretation • The influence of relatives in this case is important • Cases where med exam even had evidence to call something a suicide due to stigma and family pressure • Other influences also need to be taken into consideration = not just science Epistemology • Public health officials have often thought that single vehicle accidents are suicides • But not reported so • Pathologists argue not • We are not able to prove them as suicide scientifically • Their frame work is a particular medical legal stand work – they don’t care about prevention • Their role is medical legal • Social Epi = public role • They have different priorities and different standards • EM act conservative because they have to protect their authority • Expertise of med prof is questioned by many • At the
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