Complex Responsive Processes: An Alternative Interpretation of Knowledge, Knowing, and Understanding

Darren Stanley

Abstract


This paper offers as an alternative theoretical perspective to the growing collection of commentaries on and studies of certain complex dynamical phenomena—human knowledge and knowing. Specifically, this is an introduction to another complexity‐related theoretical framework known as “complex responsive processes” (CRP). CRP draws upon certain conceptual ideas from the complexity sciences as a source domain for analogies with particular characteristics of human interaction. The central concern is for how individual and collective identities arise, how such identities are related, and how they change. In this paper, an overview of certain key conceptual ideas from the complexity sciences in relation to CRP will be reviewed to situate CRP on the larger theoretical landscape of complex dynamical phenomena. In the end, this paper will examine some implications for such a framework on the ways in which certain aspects of human knowledge and knowing might relate to contexts of pedagogy: in particular, this paper examines the place of knowledge, knowing, and understanding in terms of the CRP structure of gesture‐and‐response or “effect” as opposed to “affect.”

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