epistemology

Philip Goldstein pgold at strauss.udel.edu
Sat Mar 18 05:43:43 MST 1995


	Howie Chodos defends his realist epitemology on the following
grounds: " Second, and
this is where Goldstein misconstrues my position, that the existence of this
subject-independent world can "ensure our objectivity". Nothing can ensure
our objectivity." Then he adds the following point: " there are ways to
distinguish between
better and worse knowledges of that reality and that reference to
"correspondence" with the world out there will be one of the
criteria." Doesn't this claim say that correspondence in one way in which
we ensure our objectivity with that independent reality or thing-in-itself"?

	I have understood Marxists to accept the Hegelian critique of the
independently real, which is that we can only know what emerges in
socio-historical contexts and that what emerges is, chronologically
speaking, the contradiction of what has already established itself, so
that no position ever encompasses the totality because opposition emerges
out of itself. Some postmodernists who critique totality preserve the
sense that all positions are partial and fragmentary and thereby grant
that something escapes all positions. These postmodernists usually do not
treat the emergence of these partial positions as a historical or
dialectical matter but as ruptures,breaks, etc., in established
positions.

Philip Goldstein




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