Communication and the construction of knowledge or transmission of belief: The role of conversation type and behavioral style.
SourceStudies in Communication Sciences
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In this paper it is proposed that a central topic of inquiry in the study of social knowledge should be the clarification of the conditions of communication that are likely to lead to the attainment of knowledge rather than to the transmission of belief. Insights and empirical evidence from social developmental psychology are presented that shed light on this issue. It is argued that social relations established between the partners in communication in the form of different conversation types are differentially linked to representations of an object based on the construction of new knowledge or transmission of beliefs. A central mechanism that constrains or enables the establishment of particular conversation types is social recognition, as this is manifested in different behavioural styles in communication. Keywords: Piaget, Moscovici, sociocognitive conflict, conversation type, behavioural style, social recognition.