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03-05-2021 | Theoretical / Philosophical Paper | Issue 2/2021

Human Studies 2/2021

A Phenomenological Approach to the Study of Social Distance

Journal:
Human Studies > Issue 2/2021
Author:
Daniela Griselda López
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Abstract

From its very beginning, sociological thought has been concerned with a topic central to our daily lives: social distance. Since inception, the concept of social distance has referred to the relationships of familiarity and strangeness between social groups, which is experienced in the social world in terms of “We” and “They”. This article covers the main tenets of a Schutzian phenomenological approach to the study of social distance and group relationships. Specific focus is placed on the different attitudes and valuations of the in-group towards the out-group considered as a stranger, the invisible excess of meaning that emerges in these types of social relationships and the conceptual construction of the Other that explains the phenomenon of discrimination.

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