Responding to philosophical stances that reality is objective and ascertainable through methods that are unbiased as means of building knowledge, interpretivism, as a research paradigm grounded in social constructionism, provides a counterpoint. Whereas social constructionism assumes that multiple realities are constructed intersubjectively in locale-specific contexts, interpretivism provides the means of gaining insight into insider’s views of their worlds. In interpretivism, researchers acknowledge that they, along with their research participants, co-construct findings that are socially situated but may be transferable to similar contexts. For example, working with persons living with HIV to construct how society stigmatizes persons living with the condition provides an understanding of how persons living with a disease or disability experience negative reactions from members of society. In this entry, the ...
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