On the Social Nature of Objectivity: Helen Longino and Justin Biddle

Theoria: Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia 30 (3):449-463 (2015)
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Abstract

According to Helen Longino, objectivity is necessarily social as it depends on critical interactions in com- munity. Justin Biddle argues that Longino’s account presupposes individuals that are completely open to any criticism; as such individuals are in principle able to criticise their beliefs on their own, Longino’s account is not really social. In the first part of my paper I argue that even for completely open individuals, criticism for maintaining objectivity is only possible in community. In the second part I question Biddle’s interpretation of Longino’s conception of the individual. I conclude that objectivity as Longino describes it is necessarily social.

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Jaana Eigi-Watkin
University of Tartu

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