While interdisciplinary knowledge is critical to moving beyond categorical ways of knowing, this comes with its own set of pedagogical challenges. We contend that acknowledging existing knowledge hierarchies and epistemological differences, recognizing the ideological baggage that students’ bring to the classroom in terms of their understandings of health, embracing intellectual uncertainty, and encouraging learning-as-witnessing, are fundamental to fostering an interdisciplinary pedagogy that opens up a space for dialogue between psychology and sociology. We draw on the case of obesity and physical inactivity in the Canadian context as an exemplar of a kinesiology dilemma in which both psychology and sociology have important, albeit different, roles to play. We suggest that the anxiety provoked by such an approach is not only necessary but productive to forge an intellectual space where psychologists and sociologists may better hear one another.
The authors are with the Faculty of Kinesiology and Recreation Management, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.