foundationalism

Richard Wolff rwolff at minerva.cis.yale.edu
Sun Jan 29 14:32:27 MST 1995


	In response to your report of the Harvey-Krieger interchange at
the NY Marxist School, I believe that you came away with an
interpretation of "foundationalism" that is very different from Harvey's
or from mine and others who accept the label anti-foundationalist. We do
quite definitely have a foundation for our views - a set of basic
concepts which we use to generate our approaches to/analyses of the world
in which we live and which we, as Marxists, wish to change in particular
ways. However, we recognize that our foundation is different from
others'. We have our truth criteria; they have theirs. What we think is
that the world contains the struggle among our different theories with
their different "foundations", "truth criteria," etc.
	What makes us anti-foundational is the insistence that no one,
particular set of basic concepts - one theory amongst the many - can
claim to be THE foundation that all others must accept as "right"
"correct" and/or THE truth. There is no "foundation" valid across all the
different theories with which human beings have tried to think their
worlds. That is the meaning of anti-foundationalism - a rejection of the
absolutist claim to have "found" the basis for everyone's thought.

Rick Wolff

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