Practicing Relativism in the Anthropocene: On Science, belief, and the Humanities

London UK: Open Humanities Press (2018)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
The book addresses a set of contemporary issues involving knowledge and science from a constructivist-pragmatist perspective often labeled "relativism." As it demonstrates, what that perspective implies are neither absurd claims nor objectionable positions but an ongoing alertness to contingency, complexity, and multiplicity that is both intellectually and ethically valuable. In an extended examination of recent writings by Bruno Latour, I indicate the increasing centrality of theological investments in his work. Discussing computational methods in literary studies and efforts to "integrate" the academic disciplines, I suggest that what distinguishes the humanities and the natural sciences are neither subject areas nor "methods" as such but fundamental epistemic orientations.. Finally, declining calls to reaffirm or rehabilitate philosophical realism in the face of denials of climate change, I suggest that the most illuminating perspectives for conceptualization and practice in the Anthropocene are precisely those labeled, but commonly mischaracterized as, “relativist.”
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2019-10-17
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
64 ( #39,134 of 49,999 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
30 ( #21,287 of 49,999 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.