Occupation through a Practice Theory Lens

Elise Bromann Bukhave, Jennifer Creek

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Although occupational scientists have studied many aspects of occupation
over the past 3 decades, there remain areas that are poorly understood
and under-theorised, which creates a weakness in understanding
occupation. In this paper, everyday life is offered as an example of one
of these areas. We present practice theory as a tool to support the
generation of alternative ways of theorising occupation. Practice theory
is a collection of approaches that seek to understand the social world
through patterns of activity. These approaches foreground activity and
performance in the creation and perpetuation of all aspects of social life,
providing a basic understanding that individuals create and re-create
the means and conditions of their lives through actively engaging in
and interacting with the environment. Practice theory can inform
understandings of the person and their everyday occupations,
embedded in social contexts. This approach offers a view of person and
participation that is radically different from a structuralist perspective.
The paper begins with a historical overview of how theories of
occupation were developed within particular epistemologies. This is
followed by an introduction to practice theory and discussion of what it
can offer to the study of occupation. The paper finishes with a real-life
case story that illustrates how practice theory can contribute to
understanding occupation within the context of everyday life.
TidsskriftJournal of Occupational Science
Antal sider7
StatusUdgivet - 2020


  • Sundhed, ernæring og livskvalitet