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Contents of Weaknesses of Critical

Weaknesses of Critical

Lecture Notes

Many contemporary theories about sport and modern society use critical theories. But this does not mean that critical theories don't have any weaknesses. There are a few you should know about and recognize: For some, critical theories are too undefined. If you value all perspectives and you define society and sport as constantly changing, where is your solid ground? The answer may be that critical theories are more concerned with a process of learning and uncovering and less concerned with creating a social system that maintains its equilibrium. The second, and related weakness has to do with the ways that critical theories often value discord, argument, and the violation of norms. It's important to recognize, for example, that not all norms are bad, that not everything is an argument. That what Coakley calls "prevailing norms" are not always negative. To take an obvious example, some norms, like not wearing summer clothes in the middle of winter, are pretty good. They make sense. Rebelling against such a norm is not necessarily advantageous. Finally, critical theories are somewhat difficult to apply. This may be because they are more focused on the process of cultural and ideological production rather than on finding ways to maintain the status quo.