The influence of logical positivism on nursing practice.

Image--the journal of nursing scholarship 02/1989; 21(4):243-5. DOI: 10.1111/j.1547-5069.1989.tb00151.x
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT While logical positivism has been said to have had major influence on the development of nursing theory, whether this influence pervades other aspects of the discipline has not been discussed. One central aspect of logical positivism, the verificationist perspective, was used to examine texts, curricular guides and standards of practice that guided nursing practice in the decades in which logical positivism had influence on nursing theory construction. This review of the literature does not support the influence of logical positivism, as exemplified by the verificationist perspective, on nursing practice guidelines.

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    ABSTRACT: This study critically examines the way in which the concept of caring is presented in the nursing literature through conceptual analytic approaches. A critical reflection on the potential consequences of representing a concept of caring as vague and ambiguous, yet central to ontology and epistemology in professional nursing is presented drawing on comparisons between the conceptual analyses of caring, and of structuralist perspectives of language, and how this potentially limits scholarship in this area. A search of the literature revealed nine conceptual papers. These papers highlight the self-referential characteristics of the concept of caring, and of analytical methods in general. It is proposed that this is the result of a systematic adherence to a rigid, structuralist view of language, whereby stable relationships between words and their meanings are assumed. An alternative perspective is offered by viewing caring as a discursive practice rather than a fixed conceptual entity, calling into question the role that the concept plays in nursing practice. A poststructuralist perspective requires caring to be perceived as a discourse of nursing that is fluid and contingent, rather than a central and guiding concept, opening up a new orientation for nursing scholarship in caring research.
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    ABSTRACT: xxii, 411 leaves : ill. (some col.) ; 30 cm. PolyU Library Call No.: [THS] LG51 .H577P SN 2005 Lee Although it is known that the role of the family is critical in stroke rehabilitation, little is known about the process of caring among Chinese family caregivers of stroke-impaired elderly relatives. Previous research on the process of family caring has focused on burdens and negative outcomes. To fill this gap, this study aims to explore and explain the experiences of 15 Chinese family caregivers using a grounded theory approach, which allows the formulation of hypotheses and the generation of theory from gathered data. Glaser (1978, 1992) and Straus and Corbin’s (1998) grounded theory method, which are based on symbolic interactionism (Blumer, 1937; 1969), were used to collect and analyse naturalistic data rich in human experience. Emphasis was placed on developing an analysis that illuminated the area under study and remained faithful to the constant comparative method described by Glaser (1978, 1992) and Strauss and Corbin (1998). This method allowed the more recent responses of the participants to be compared with those of earlier participants in order to identify similarities, consistencies, discrepancies and anomalies. In the course of the study, concepts emerged as the data were collected and analyzed concurrently. A two-interview qualitative approach to data collection was adopted between January 2001 and September 2003. The first in-depth interviews consisted of 15 family caregivers held between January 2001 and June 2001. The second interviews were held two years later between May 2003 and September 2003 with 13 family caregivers drawn from the first round participants. The second interviews were conducted over a period of four months and compared participants’ caring and adaptive behaviours with those investigated two years earlier in the interviews. The findings of coping behaviours and caring patterns of a culturally distinctive kind were refined and confirmed in the second interviews. Data were collected utilizing different forms of reflection as suggested by Glaser (1978, 1992) and Strauss and Corbin (1998). Data management was facilitated through the use of coding notes, memos, diagrams, and the software program QRS NUD*IST (Version 4.0). The researcher then identified a core category of "Regaining Self-perceived Control" emerging from study data which reflected the Chinese family caregivers’ process of striving to continue to fulfill the demands of their role during the transition. "Cognitive Reframing", "Behavioural Reframing" and "Experiential Reframing" were identified as the conceptual indicators that linked al the other concepts relating to the core category of "Regaining Self-perceived Control", and they appeared to be fundamental to family caregivers’ coping strategies. A theory of five stages in the adaptation process that family caregivers described as a means of regaining self-perceived control include: Uncertainty, Disruption, Accommodation, Balance, and Reconciliation. Although caring strategies were found to vary, all were influenced by Chinese family caregivers’ particular common Confucian ethical values and customs. This study set out to contribute significantly to the understanding of cultural issues and caring values that are unique to Hong Kong Chinese family caregivers of stroke-impaired elderly relatives. It will provide a basis for devising adequate interventions and resources to assist caregivers. Nurses and other health care providers can use this information in assessments and in planning individualized interventions that include family caregivers as active participants in managing caregiving. Of prime importance in meeting the complex issues of caregiving management is a client-provider relationship that permits open communication. Ph.D., School of Nursing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, 2005.


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