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Encyclopedia > Relativism

Relativism is the idea that some element or aspect of experience or culture is relative to, i.e., dependent on, some other element or aspect. Some relativists claim that humans can understand and evaluate beliefs and behaviors only in terms of their historical or cultural context. The term often refers to truth relativism, which is the doctrine that there are no absolute truths, i.e., that truth is always relative to some particular frame of reference, such as a language or a culture. Two-dimensional analogy of space-time curvature described in General Relativity. ... Image File history File links Broom_icon. ... Look up Experience in Wiktionary, the free dictionary This article discusses the general concept of experience. ... For other uses, see Culture (disambiguation). ... This article is about the study of time in human terms. ... For other uses, see Culture (disambiguation). ... Time Saving Truth from Falsehood and Envy, François Lemoyne, 1737 For other uses, see Truth (disambiguation). ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ...


One argument for relativism suggests that our own cognitive bias prevents us from observing something objectively with our own senses, and notational bias will apply to whatever we can allegedly measure without using our senses. In addition, we have a culture bias — shared with other trusted observers — which we cannot eliminate. A counterargument to this states that subjective certainty and concrete objects and causes form part of our everyday life, and that there is no great value in discarding such useful ideas as isomorphism, objectivity and a final truth. (For more information on the "usefulness" of ideas, see Pragmatism.) This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Notational bias is a form of cultural bias in which a notation induces the appearance of a nonexistent natural law. ... Cultural bias is interpreting and judging phenomena in terms particular to ones own culture. ... This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... In sociology, an isomorphism is a similiarity of the processes or structure of one organization to those of another, be it the result of imitation or independent development under similar constraints. ... For other uses of objectivity, see objectivity (disambiguation). ... Time Saving Truth from Falsehood and Envy, François Lemoyne, 1737 For other uses, see Truth (disambiguation). ... Pragmatism is a philosophic school that originated in the late nineteenth century with Charles Sanders Peirce, who first stated the pragmatic maxim. ...


The most popular definitions of relativism assume it to mean that all points of view are equally valid, as opposed to an absolutism that insists that there is but one true and correct view. In fact, relativism asserts that a particular instance Y exists only in relation to and as a manifestation of a particular framework or viewpoint X, and that no framework or standpoint is uniquely privileged over all others. That is, a non-universal trait Y (e.g., a particular practice, behavior, custom, convention, concept, belief, perception, ethics, truth, or conceptual framework) is a dependent variable influenced by the independent variable X (e.g., a particular language, culture, historical epoch, a priori cognitive architecture, scientific frameworks, gender, ethnicity, status, individuality). Notably, this is not an argument that all instances of a certain kind of framework (say, all languages) do not share certain basic universal commonalities (say, grammatical structure and vocabulary) that essentially define that kind of framework and distinguishes it from other frameworks (for example, linguists have criteria that defines language and distinguishes it from the mere communication of other animals). Moreover, relativism also presupposes philosophical realism in that there are actual objective things in the world that are relative to other real things. Moreover, relativism also assumes causality, as well as a problematic web of relationships between various independent variables and the particular dependent variables that they influence. The term absolutism can mean: A belief in absolute truth moral absolutism, the belief that there is some absolute standard of right and wrong political absolutism, a political system where one person holds absolute power, also called apolytarchy from Gr. ... Look up Framework in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... A point of view, viewpoint or POV, is the following: On a given topic, a point of view is a cognitive perspective. ... Look up practice, practise in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Custom has a number of meanings: A custom is a common practice among a group of people, especially depending on country, culture, time, and religion. ... Convention has at least two very distinct but related meanings. ... For other uses, see Concept (disambiguation). ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... In psychology and the cognitive sciences, perception is the process of acquiring, interpreting, selecting, and organizing sensory information. ... For other uses, see Ethics (disambiguation). ... Time Saving Truth from Falsehood and Envy, François Lemoyne, 1737 For other uses, see Truth (disambiguation). ... For the concept in aesthetics and art criticism, see The Conceptual Framework. ... In experimental design, a dependent variable (also known as response variable, responding variable or regressand) is a factor whose values in different treatment conditions are compared. ... In an experimental design, the independent variable (argument of a function, also called a predictor variable) is the variable that is manipulated or selected by the experimenter to determine its relationship to an observed phenomenon (the dependent variable). ... For other uses, see Culture (disambiguation). ... A priori is originally a Latin phrase meaning from the former or from what comes before. However, several different uses of the term have developed in English: A priori (law) - adj. ... A cognitive architecture is a blueprint for intelligent agents. ... Gender in common usage refers to the sexual distinction between male and female. ... This article or section should be merged with ethnic group Ethnicity is the cultural characteristics that connect a particular group or groups of people to each other. ... Individualism, in general, is a term used to describe a theoretical or practical emphasis of the individual, as opposed to, and possibly at the expense of, the group. ... A vocabulary is a set of words known to a person or other entity, or that are part of a specific language. ... Communication is a process that allows organisms to exchange information by several methods. ... Look up realism, realist, realistic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Causality or causation denotes the relationship between one event (called cause) and another event (called effect) which is the consequence (result) of the first. ...

Contents

Forms of relativism and advocates of relativism

Anthropological versus philosophical relativism

Anthropological relativism refers to a methodological stance, in which the researcher suspends (or brackets) his or her own cultural biases while attempting to understand beliefs and behaviors in their local contexts. This has become known as methodological relativism, and concerns itself specifically with avoiding ethnocentrism or the application of one's own cultural standards to the assessment of other cultures.[1] This is also the basis of the so-called "emic" and "etic" distinction, in which: Cultural relativism is the principle that an individual humans beliefs and activities should be interpreted in terms of his or her own culture. ... Methodology is defined as the analysis of the // == Headline text == principles of methods, rules, and postulates employed by a discipline or the development of methods, to be applied within a discipline a particular procedure or set of procedures. [1]. It should be noted that methodology is frequently used when method... Methodological relativism refers to a stance by Anthropologists who are concerned with describing actual human behavior in which the researcher suspends or brackets his or her own cultural biases while attempting to understand beliefs and behaviors in their local contexts. ... This box:      Ethnocentrism is the tendency to look at the world primarily from the perspective of ones own culture. ... Emic and etic are terms used by some in the social sciences and the behavioral sciences to refer to two different kinds of data concerning human behavior. ... Emic and etic are terms used by some in the social sciences and the behavioral sciences to refer to two different kinds of data concerning human behavior. ...

  • An emic or insider account of behavior is a description of a society in terms that are meaningful to the participant or actor's own culture; an emic account is therefore culture-specific, and typically refers to what is considered "common sense" within the culture under observation.
  • An etic or outsider account is a description of a society by an observer, in terms that can be applied to other cultures; that is, an etic account is culturally neutral, and typically refers to the conceptual framework of the social scientist. (This is complicated when it is scientific research itself that is under study, or when there is theoretical or terminological disagreement within the social sciences.)

Philosophical relativism, in contrast, is simply an anti-dogmatic position that asserts that the truth of a proposition depends on who interprets it because no moral or cultural consensus can or will be reached.[2] For other uses, see Common sense (disambiguation). ...


Methodological relativism and philosophical relativism can exist independently from one another, or one can be based on the other.[3]


Descriptive versus normative relativism

The concept of relativism also has importance both for philosophers and for anthropologists in another way. In general, anthropologists engage in descriptive relativism, whereas philosophers engage in normative relativism, although there is some overlap (for example, descriptive relativism can pertain to concepts, normative relativism to truth). For other uses, see Philosophy (disambiguation). ... Anthropology (from Greek: ἀνθρωπος, anthropos, human being; and λόγος, logos, knowledge) is the study of humanity. ...


Descriptive relativism assumes that certain cultural groups have different modes of thought, standards of reasoning, and so forth, and it is the anthropologist's task to describe, but not to evaluate the validity of these principles and practices of a cultural group. It is possible for an anthropologist in his or her fieldwork to be a descriptive relativist about some things that typically concern the philosopher (e.g., ethical principles) but not about others (e.g., logical principles). However, the descriptive relativist's empirical claims about epistemic principles, moral ideals and the like are often countered by anthropological arguments that such things are universal, and much of the recent literature on these matters is explicitly concerned with the extent of, and evidence for, cultural or moral or linguistic or human universals (see Brown, 1991 for a good discussion).


The fact that the various species of descriptive relativism are empirical claims may tempt the philosopher to conclude that they are of little philosophical interest, but there are several reasons why this isn't so. First, some philosophers, notably Kant, argue that certain sorts of cognitive differences between human beings (or even all rational beings) are impossible, so such differences could never be found to obtain in fact, an argument that places a priori limits on what empirical inquiry could discover and on what versions of descriptive relativism could be true. Second, claims about actual differences between groups play a central role in some arguments for normative relativism (for example, arguments for normative ethical relativism often begin with claims that different groups in fact have different moral codes or ideals). Finally, the anthropologist's descriptive account of relativism helps to separate the fixed aspects of human nature from those that can vary, and so a descriptive claim that some important aspect of experience or thought does (or does not) vary across groups of human beings tells us something important about human nature and the human condition.


Normative relativism concerns normative or evaluative claims that modes of thought, standards of reasoning, or the like are only right or wrong relative to a framework. ‘Normative’ is meant in a general sense, applying to a wide range of views; in the case of beliefs, for example, normative correctness equals truth. This does not mean, of course, that framework-relative correctness or truth is always clear, the first challenge being to explain what it amounts to in any given case (e.g., with respect to concepts, truth, epistemic norms). Normative relativism (say, in regard to normative ethical relativism) therefore implies that things (say, ethical claims) are not simply true in themselves, but only have truth values relative to broader frameworks (say, moral codes). (Many normative ethical relativist arguments run from premises about ethics to conclusions that assert the relativity of truth values, bypassing general claims about the nature of truth, but it is often more illuminating to consider the type of relativism under question directly.)[4]


Indian religions

Indian religions tend to be naturally relativistic. Mahavira (599-527 BC), the 24th Tirthankara of Jainism, developed an early philosophy regarding relativism and subjectivism known as Anekantavada. Hindu religion has no theological difficulties in accepting degrees of truth in other religions. A Rig Vedic hymn states that "Truth is One, though the sages know it variously." (Ékam sat vipra bahudā vadanti) Statue of Jain God Bahubali in Shravanabelagola, Karnataka attracts thousands of devotees. ... Idol of Lord Mahavira at Shri Mahaveerji (the holy town in Rajasthan named after Mahavira. ... In Jainism, a Tirthankara (Fordmaker) is a human who achieved enlightenment, became a Jiva, and whose religious teachings have formed the canon of Jainism; although not Gods, statues of Tirthankaras are found in temples. ... Jain and Jaina redirect here. ... This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Anekantavada is a basic principle of Jainism dealing with the fact that reality may be percieved diferently from different points of views. ... Hinduism (known as in modern Indian languages[1]) is a religious tradition[2] that originated in the Indian subcontinent. ... The Rig Veda ऋग्वेद (Sanskrit ṛc praise + veda knowledge) is the earliest of the four Hindu religious scriptures known as the Vedas. ...


It is claimed that the Sikh Gurus (religious leaders) have propagated the message of "many paths" leading to the one God and ultimate salvation for all souls who tread on the path of righteousness. They have supported the view that proponents of all faiths can, by doing good and virtuous deeds and by remembering the Lord, certainly achieve salvation. The students of the Sikh faith are told to accept all leading faiths as possible vehicle for attaining spiritual enlightenment provided the faithful study, ponder and practice the teachings of their prophets and leaders. The holy book of the Sikhs called the Sri Guru Granth Sahib says: "Do not say that the Vedas, the Bible and the Koran are false. Those who do not contemplate them are false." SGGS page 1350.[5] Sikhism was established by ten Gurus, teachers or masters, over the period 1469 to 1708. ... Stylised Ek Onkar Simple Ek Onkar Ek Onkar (also , , Ēk Ōaṅkār, Ek Omkar, Ik Onkar and other variants) means one God and is a central tenet of Sikh religious philosophy. ... For other uses, see Salvation (disambiguation). ... Righteousness in this article refers to the important theological concept in Islam, Judaism and Christianity. ... For other uses, see Lord (disambiguation). ... Religions Sikhism Scriptures Guru Granth Sahib Languages English, Punjabi] A Sikh (English: or ; Punjabi: , , IPA: ) is an adherent to Sikhism. ... Guru Granth Sahib (Granth is Punjabi for book, Sahib is Hindi meaning master, from Arabic, meaning companion, friend, owner, or master) or Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji or SGGS for short, is more than a holy book of the Sikhs. ... Guru Granth Sahib (Granth is Punjabi for book, Sahib is Hindi meaning master, from Arabic, meaning companion, friend, owner, or master) or Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji or SGGS for short, is more than a holy book of the Sikhs. ...


Ethnocentrism of any sort (including the idea of belonging to a 'school of Buddhism' as well as evangelism and religious supremacism) is, according to Buddhist thought, rooted in self-grasping and reified thought - the cause of Samsara itself. The current Dalai Lama has repeatedly pointed out that any attempt to convert individuals from their beliefs is not only non-Buddhist, but abusive: the identification of evangelism as an expression of compassion is considered to be false, and indeed the idea that Buddhism is the one true path is likewise false for Buddhists. For other uses, see Samsara (disambiguation). ... This article is about the Dalai Lama lineage. ...


Sophists

Sophists are considered the founding fathers of relativism in the Western World. Elements of relativism emerged among the Sophists in the 5th century BC. Notably, it was Protagoras who coined the phrase, "Man (i.e. a human being) is the measure of all things: of things which are, that they are, and of things which are not, that they are not." The thinking of the Sophists is mainly known through their opponents, Plato and Socrates. Sophism was originally a term for the techniques taught by a highly respected group of philosophy and rhetoric teachers in ancient Greece. ... Occident redirects here. ... Sophism was originally a term for the techniques taught by a highly respected group of philosophy and rhetoric teachers in ancient Greece. ... BC may stand for: Before Christ (see Anno Domini) : an abbreviation used to refer to a year before the beginning of the year count that starts with the supposed year of the birth of Jesus. ... Protagoras (in Greek Πρωταγόρας) was born around 481 BC in Abdera, Thrace in Ancient Greece. ... PLATO was one of the first generalized Computer assisted instruction systems, originally built by the University of Illinois (U of I) and later taken over by Control Data Corporation (CDC), who provided the machines it ran on. ... This page is about the Classical Greek philosopher. ...


Bernard Crick

Another important advocate of relativism, Bernard Crick, a British political scientist, wrote the book In Defence of Politics (first published in 1962), suggesting the inevitability of moral conflict between people. Crick stated that only ethics could resolve such conflict, and when that occurred in public it resulted in politics. Accordingly, Crick saw the process of dispute resolution, harms reduction, mediation or peacemaking as central to all of moral philosophy. He became an important influence on the feminists and later on the Greens. Sir Bernard Crick (born 16 December 1929) is a British political theorist whose views are often summarised as politics is ethics done in public. He seeks to arrive at a politics of action, as opposed to a politics of thought or of ideology. ... For other uses, see Ethics (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Politics (disambiguation). ... It has been suggested that Adjudication be merged into this article or section. ... Harm reduction is a set of policy beliefs, essentially stating that some people always have and always will perform activities, such as promiscuous sex or drug use that may cause them harm. ... For statistical mediation, see Mediation (Statistics). ... Peacemaking is a form of conflict resolution which focuses on establishing equal power relationships that will be robust enough to forestall future conflict, and establishing some means of agreeing on ethical decisions within a community that has previously had conflict. ... Feminism is a social theory and political movement primarily informed and motivated by the experience of women. ... Greens are people who support some or all of goals of a Green Party without necessarily working with or voting for that or any party. ...


Paul Feyerabend

The philosopher-of-science Paul Feyerabend wholeheartedly embraced relativism, and even "epistemological anarchy".[6] Paul Karl Feyerabend (January 13, 1924 – February 11, 1994) was an Austrian-born philosopher of science best known for his work as a professor of philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley, where he worked for three decades (1958-1989). ...

"All methodologies have their limitations and the only rule that survives is 'anything goes'"[7]

Or, in a more conciliatory mood:

"I argue that all rules have their limits, and there is no comprehensive 'rationality', I do not argue that we should procede without rules and standards"[8]

Thomas Kuhn

Thomas Kuhn's philosophy of science, as expressed in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is often seen as relativistic (and enthusiastically proclaimed as such within the humanities). He claimed that as well as progressing steadily and incrementally ("normal science"), science undergoes periodic revolutions or "paradigm shifts", leaving scientists working in different paradigms with difficulty in even communicating. Thomas Samuel Kuhn (pronounced )(July 18, 1922 – June 17, 1996) was an American intellectual who wrote extensively on the history of science and developed several important notions in the philosophy of science. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Normal science is a concept originated by Thomas Samuel Kuhn and elaborated in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. ... Paradigm shift is the term first used by Thomas Kuhn in his 1962 book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions to describe a change in basic assumptions within the ruling theory of science. ...

"the third and most fundamental aspect of the incommensurability of competing paradigms: this is a sense that I am unable to explicate further, [in which] the proponents of competing paradigms practice their trades in different worlds. One contains constrained bodies that fall slowly, the other pendulums that repeat their motions again and again. In one, solutions are compounds, in the other mixtures. One is embedded in a flat, the other in a curved, matrix of space. Practicing in two different worlds, the two groups of scientists see different things when they look from the same point in the same direction. Again, that is not to say that they can see anything they please. Both are looking at the world, and what they look at has not changed. But in some areas they see different things and they see them in different relations one to the other. That is why a law that cannot even be demonstrated to one group of scientists may occasionally seem intuitively obvious to another. Equally, it is why, before they can hope to communicate fully, one group or the other must experience the conversion that we have been calling a paradigm shift."[9]

Thus the truth of a claim, or the existence of a posited entity is relative to the paradigm employed. However, he was reluctant to fully embrace relativism.

From these remarks, one thing is however certain: Kuhn is not saying that incommensurable theories cannot be compared - what they can’t be is compared in terms of a system of common measure. He very plainly says that they can be compared, and he reiterates this repeatedly in later work, in a (mostly in vain) effort to avert the crude and sometimes catastrophic misinterpretations he suffered from mainstream philosophers and post-modern relativists alike.[10]

George Lakoff and Mark Johnson

George Lakoff and Mark Johnson define relativism in their book Metaphors We Live By as the rejection of both subjectivism and metaphysical objectivism in order to focus on the relationship between them, i.e. the metaphor by which we relate our current experience to our previous experience. In particular, Lakoff and Johnson characterize "objectivism" as a "straw man", and, to a lesser degree, criticize the views of Karl Popper, Kant and Aristotle. This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Mark Johnson may refer to: Mark Johnson (professor), philosophy professor Mark Johnson (footballer) (born 1978), Australian rules footballer Mark Johnson (film producer) Mark Johnson (umpire), baseball umpire Mark Johnson (hockey player) (born 1957) Mark Johnson (rugby) Mark Johnson (baseball analyst) Mark Johnson (musician) Mark Johnson (football club director), director of... organization culture This page meets Wikipedias criteria for speedy deletion. ... Subject (philosophy) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... Objectivism is the philosophy developed by Russian-born American philosopher and author Ayn Rand. ... In language, a metaphor is a rhetorical trope where a comparison is made between two seemingly unrelated subjects. ... A straw man argument is a logical fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponents position. ... Sir Karl Raimund Popper, CH, FRS, FBA, (July 28, 1902 – September 17, 1994), was an Austrian and British[1] philosopher and a professor at the London School of Economics. ... Kant redirects here. ... This article is about the philosopher. ...


Robert Nozick

In his book Invariances, Robert Nozick expresses a complex set of theories about the absolute and the relative. He thinks the absolute/relative distinction should be recast in terms of a variant/invariant distinction, where there are many things a proposition can vary with, or be invariant with regard to. He thinks it is coherent for truth to be relative, and speculates that it might vary with time. He thinks necessity is an unobtainable notion, but can be approximated by robust invariance across a variety of conditions — although we can never identify a proposition that is invariant with regard to everything. Finally, he is not particularly warm to the most (in)famous form of relativism, moral relativism, preferring an evolutionary account. Invariances, published in 2001 by Harvard University Press, was Robert Nozicks last book before his death in 2002. ... Robert Nozick (November 16, 1938 – January 23, 2002) was an American philosopher and Pellegrino University Professor at Harvard University. ... In philosophy, moral relativism is the position that moral or ethical propositions do not reflect objective and/or universal moral truths, but instead make claims relative to social, cultural, historical or personal circumstances. ...


Joseph Margolis

Joseph Margolis advocates a view he calls "robust relativism" and defends it in his books: Historied Thought, Constructed World, Chapter 4 (California, 1995) and The Truth about Relativism (Blackwells, 1991). He opens his account by stating that our logics should depend on what we take to be the nature of the sphere to which we wish to apply our logics. Holding that there can be no distinctions which are not "privileged" between the alethic, the ontic, and the epistemic, he maintains that a many valued logic just might be the most apt for aesthetics or history since, because in these practices, we are loath to hold to simple binary logic; and he also holds that many-valued logic is relativistic. (This is perhaps an unusual definition of "relativistic". Compare with his comments on "relationism"). "True" and "False" as mutually exclusive and exhaustive judgements on Hamlet, for instance, really does seem absurd. A many valued logic — "apt", "reasonable", "likely", and so on — seems intuitively more applicable to Hamlet interpretation. Where apparent contradictions arise between such interpretations, we might call the interpretations "incongruent", rather than dubbing either "false". Full Name: Joseph Zalman Margolis Birth: May 16, 1924 School/Tradition: Constructivism, Cultural Realism, Historicism, Pragmatism, Relativism. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... 1. ... Multi-valued logics are logical calculi in which there are more than two truth values. ... The Parthenons facade showing an interpretation of golden rectangles in its proportions. ... This article is about the study of time in human terms. ... In logic, the principle of bivalence states that for any proposition P, either P is true or P is false. ... For other uses, see Hamlet (disambiguation). ...


The problem with the standard two-valued logic is simply that it only ever applies to sentential formulas and not to interpreted sentences in use. The principle of non-contradiction can easily be made not to obtain by reinterpreting the terms involved, as is the case with the corpuscular versus the wave theory of light[citation needed].


It was Aristotle who held that relativism implied we should, sticking with appearances only, end up contradicting ourselves somewhere if we could apply all attributes to all ousiai (beings). Aristotle, however, made non-contradiction dependent upon his essentialism. If his essentialism is false, then so too is his ground for disallowing relativism.(Subsequent philosophers have found other reasons for supporting the principle of non-contradiction). In ontology, a being is anything that can be said to be, either transcendantly or immanently. ... This article is about the philosopher. ... In philosophy, essentialism is the view, that, for any specific kind of entity it is at least theoretically possible to specify a finite list of characteristics —all of which any entity must have to belong to the group defined. ...


Beginning with Protagoras and invoking Charles Peirce, Margolis shows that the historic struggle to discredit relativism is an attempt to impose an unexamined belief in the world's essentially rigid rule-like nature. Plato and Aristotle merely attacked "relationalism"--the doctrine of true-for l or true for k, and the like, where l and k are different speakers or different world, or the something similar (Most philosophers would call this positions "relativism"). For Margolis "true" means true. That is the alethic use of "true" remains untouched. However, in real world contexts, and context is ubiquitous in the real world, we must apply truth values. Here, in epistemic terms, we might retire "true" tout court as an evaluation and keep "false". The rest of our value-judgements could be graded from "extremely plausible" down to "false". Judgements which on a bivalent logic would be incompatible or contradictory are further seen as "incongruent", though one may well have more weight than the other. In short, relativistic logic is not, or need not be, the bugbear it is often presented to be. It may simply be the best type of logic to apply to certain very uncertain spheres of our real experiences in the world (although some sort of logic needs to be applied to make that judgement). Those who swear by bivalent logic might simply be the ultimate keepers of the great fear of the flux. Protagoras (in Greek Πρωταγόρας) was born around 481 BC in Abdera, Thrace in Ancient Greece. ... Charles Sanders Peirce (IPA: /pɝs/), (September 10, 1839 – April 19, 1914) was an American polymath, physicist, and philosopher, born in Cambridge, Massachusetts. ... Bivalent (chemistry): two or more atoms bound together as a single unit and forming part of a molecule An atom which can form two covalent bonds with other molecules (such as oxygen) is said to be bivalent, posessing a valency of 2. ...


Richard Rorty

Philosopher Richard Rorty has a somewhat paradoxical role in the debate over relativism: he is criticized for his relativistic views, but prefers to describe himself not as a relativist, but as a pragmatist. Richard McKay Rorty (October 4, 1931 in New York City – June 8, 2007) was an American philosopher. ... Look up paradox in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Pragmatism is a school of philosophy which originated in the United States in the late 1800s. ...

'In short, my strategy for escaping the self-referential difficulties into which "the Relativist" keeps getting himself is to move everything over from epistemology and metaphysics into cultural politics, from claims to knowledge and appeals to self-evidence to suggestions about what we should try.'[11]

Rorty takes a deflationary attitude to truth, believing there is nothing of interest to be said about truth in general, including the contention that it is generally subjective. He also argues that the notion of warrant or justification can do most of the work traditionally assigned to the concept of truth, and that justification is relative; justification is justification to an audience, for Rorty. Thus his position, in the view of many commentators, adds up to relativism. Deflation is a decrease in the general price level, over a period of time. ... Time Saving Truth from Falsehood and Envy, François Lemoyne, 1737 For other uses, see Truth (disambiguation). ... Warrant has several meanings: In law, a warrant is a form of authorization, such as A writ issued by a judge. ... Justification can mean: justification (jurisprudence) justification (typesetting) justification (theology) In epistemology, justification of a belief is what renders it worth believing in terms of its probable truth. ...


In Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity he argues that the debate between so-called relativists and so-called objectivists is beside the point because they don't have enough premises in common for either side to prove anything to the other. Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity (1989), written by American philosopher Richard Rorty, is based on two sets of lectures given at University College, London, and at Trinity College, Cambridge. ...


Critics of relativism

Philosopher Paul Boghossian has written a book called Fear of Knowledge: Against Relativism and Constructivism. This article is being considered for deletion in accordance with Wikipedias deletion policy. ...


In Science and Relativism, Larry Laudan writes "The displacement of the idea that facts and evidence matter by the idea that everything boils down to subjective interest and perspectives, is — second only to American political campaigns — the most prominent and pernicious manifestation of intellectualism of our time. Larry Laudan is a contemporary philosopher of science. ...


The literary theorist Christopher Norris has written a book entitled "Against Relativism". He is an expert on postmodern thought, particularly deconstruction, and argues that deconstruction, properly understood, does not equate to relativism. Christopher (Charles) Norris (born November 6, 1947)[1] is a British literary critic and theorist. ... Postmodernity (also called post-modernity or the postmodern condition) is a term used by philosophers, social scientists, art critics and social critics to refer to aspects of contemporary art, culture, economics and social conditions that are the result of the unique features of late 20th century and early 21st century... Deconstruction is a term in contemporary philosophy, literary criticism, and the social sciences, denoting a process by which the texts and languages of Western philosophy (in particular) appear to shift and complicate in meaning when read in light of the assumptions and absences they reveal within themselves. ...


Plato was the first great critic of relativism. He criticises the views of the sophist Protagoras in his dialogue Thaetetus. PLATO was one of the first generalized Computer assisted instruction systems, originally built by the University of Illinois (U of I) and later taken over by Control Data Corporation (CDC), who provided the machines it ran on. ... Sophism was originally a term for the techniques taught by a highly respected group of philosophy and rhetoric teachers in ancient Greece. ... Protagoras (in Greek Πρωταγόρας) was born around 481 BC in Abdera, Thrace in Ancient Greece. ... Theaetetus could mean: Theaetetus (mathematician) (c. ...


Physicist Alan Sokal initiaited the science wars with his hoax paper entitled "Transgressing the Boundaries: Towards a Transformative Hermeneutics of Quantum Gravity". [12] . He later co-authored the book Fashionable Nonsense (also known as Intellectual Impostures) with Jean Bricmont, which criticises the postmodernist use of science. Alan David Sokal (born 1955) is a physicist at New York University. ... The Science wars were a series of intellectual battles in the 1990s between postmodernists and realists (though neither party would likely use the terms to describe themselves) about the nature of scientific theories. ... A hoax is an attempt to trick an audience into believing that something false is real. ... The Sokal Affair was a famous hoax played by physicist Alan Sokal on the postmodernist humanities academics world. ... Fashionable Nonsense: Postmodern Intellectuals Abuse of Science (ISBN 0-312-20407-8; French: Impostures Intellectuelles, published in the UK as Intellectual Impostures, ISBN 1-86197-631-3) is a book by professors Alan Sokal and Jean Bricmont. ... Jean Bricmont is a Belgian theoretical physicist and a professor at the Catholic University of Louvain. ... Postmodernism (sometimes abbreviated pomo) is a term applied to a wide-ranging set of developments in critical theory, philosophy, architecture, art, literature, and culture, which are generally characterized as either emerging from, in reaction to, or superseding, modernism. ...


Postmodern relativism

The term "relativism" often comes up in debates over postmodernism, poststructuralism and phenomenology. Critics of these perspectives often identify advocates with the label "relativism." For example, the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis is often considered a relativist view because it posits that linguistic categories and structures shape the way people view the world. Similarly, deconstruction is often termed a relativist perspective because of the ways it locates the meaning of a text in its appropriation and reading, implying that there is no "true" reading of a text and no text apart from its reading. Claims by literary critic Stanley Fish are also often discussed as "relativist". Postmodernism is a term applied to a wide-ranging set of developments in critical theory, philosophy, architecture, art, literature, and culture, which are generally characterized as either emerging from, in reaction to, or superseding, modernism. ... Post-structuralism is a body of work that followed in the wake of structuralism, and sought to understand the Western world as a network of structures, as in structuralism, but in which such structures are ordered primarily by local, shifting differences (as in deconstruction) rather than grand binary oppositions and... This article is about the philosophical movement. ... In linguistics, the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis (SWH) states that there is a systematic relationship between the grammatical categories of the language a person speaks and how that person both understands the world and behaves in it. ... Deconstruction is a term in contemporary philosophy, literary criticism, and the social sciences, denoting a process by which the texts and languages of Western philosophy (in particular) appear to shift and complicate in meaning when read in light of the assumptions and absences they reveal within themselves. ... Stanley Fish (born 1938) is a prominent American literary theorist and legal scholar. ...


These perspectives do not strictly count as relativist in the philosophical sense, because they express agnosticism on the nature of reality and make epistemological rather than ontological claims. Nevertheless, the term is useful to differentiate them from realists who believe that the purpose of philosophy, science, or literary critique is to locate externally true meanings. Important philosophers and theorists such as Michel Foucault, Max Stirner and Friedrich Nietzsche, political movements such as post-anarchism or post-left anarchy can also be considered as relativist in this sense - though a better term might be social constructivist. This article or section should include material from Episteme Epistemology (from the Greek words episteme=science and logos=word/speech) is the branch of philosophy that deals with the nature, origin and scope of knowledge. ... This article is about the philosophical meaning of ontology. ... Contemporary philosophical realism, also referred to as metaphysical realism, is the belief in a reality that is completely ontologically independent of our conceptual schemes, linguistic practices, beliefs, etc. ... Michel Foucault (IPA pronunciation: ) (October 15, 1926 – June 25, 1984) was a French philosopher and historian. ... Johann Kaspar Schmidt (October 25, 1806 – June 26, 1856), better known as Max Stirner (the nom de plume he adopted from a schoolyard nickname he had acquired as a child because of his high brow Stirn), was a German philosopher, who ranks as one of the literary grandfathers of nihilism... Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (October 15, 1844 – August 25, 1900) (IPA: ) was a nineteenth-century German philosopher. ... Post-anarchism or postanarchism is the term used to represent anarchist philosophies developed since the 1980s using post-structuralist and postmodernist approaches. ... Post-left anarchy is a recent current in anarchist thought that promotes a critique of anarchisms relationship to traditional leftism. ...


The spread and popularity of this kind of "soft" relativism varies between academic disciplines. It has wide support in anthropology and has a majority following in cultural studies. It also has advocates in political theory and political science, sociology, and continental philosophy (as distinct from Anglo-American analytical philosophy). It has inspired empirical studies of the social construction of meaning such as those associated with labelling theory, which defenders can point to as evidence of the validity of their theories (albeit risking accusations of performative contradiction in the process). Advocates of this kind of relativism often also claim that recent developments in the natural sciences, such as Heisenberg's uncertainty principle, quantum mechanics, chaos theory and complexity theory show that science is now becoming relativistic. However, many scientists who use these methods continue to identify as realist or post-positivist, and some sharply criticize the association[13][14] Anthropology (from Greek: ἀνθρωπος, anthropos, human being; and λόγος, logos, knowledge) is the study of humanity. ... Continental philosophy is a term used in philosophy to designate one of two major traditions of modern Western philosophy. ... A performative contradiction is a statement that, if true, contradicts itself, such as all statements must be false or all truth is relative. ... In quantum physics, the outcome of even an ideal measurement of a system is not deterministic, but instead is characterized by a probability distribution, and the larger the associated standard deviation is, the more uncertain we might say that that characteristic is for the system. ... For a less technical and generally accessible introduction to the topic, see Introduction to quantum mechanics. ... For other uses, see Chaos Theory (disambiguation). ... Complexity theory can refer to more than one thing: Computational complexity theory: a field in theoretical computer science and mathematics dealing with the resources required during computation to solve a given problem Systems theory (or systemics or general systems theory): an interdisciplinary field including engineering, biology and philosophy that incorporates... In the philosophy of science, the term post-positivist has been used in two ways: 1) To refer to scientific philosophies that arose after, and in reaction to, positivism. ...


Relativism: pro and con

Criticisms

  • One common argument [15] [16][17][18][19] against relativism suggests that it inherently contradicts, refutes, or stultifies itself: the statement "all is relative" classes either as a relative statement or as an absolute one. If it is relative, then this statement does not rule out absolutes. If the statement is absolute, on the other hand, then it provides an example of an absolute statement, proving that not all truths are relative. However, this argument against relativism only applies to relativism that positions truth as relative – i.e. epistemological/truth-value relativism. More specifically, it is only strong forms of epistemological relativism that can come in for this criticism as there are many epistemological relativists who posit that some aspects of what is regarded as "true" are not universal, yet still accept that other universal truths exist (e.g. gas laws). However, such exceptions need to be carefully justified, or "anything goes".
  • Aside from whether relativism is true, critics say it undermines morality, possibly resulting in anomie and complete Social Darwinism. Relativism denies that harming others is wrong in any absolute sense. The majority of relativists, of course, consider it immoral to harm others, but relativist theory allows for the opposite belief. If I can believe it wrong for me to harm others, I can also believe it right – no matter what the circumstances.
  • The problem of negation also arises. If everyone with differing opinions is right, then no one is. Thus instead of saying "all beliefs (ideas, truths, etc.) are equally valid," one might just as well say "all beliefs are equally worthless". (see article on Doublethink).
  • Relativism is also sometimes seen as an over-reaction to colonialism. Those upset with the quick evaluation of different cultures and ideas as inferior have over-reacted into 'all cultures and ideas are equal'.[citation needed]
  • Another argument is that if relativism presupposes that "all beliefs are equally valid," it is then saying belief systems that believe they are the only individual valid belief system nullifies it as being one of many valid beliefs. For example, relativism presupposes all beliefs are equally valid. Most monotheistic religions, Christianity or Islam for example, however, presuppose that they are, individually, the only valid belief systems. This creates a direct self-contradiction: relativism presupposes that any belief, including one such as Christianity, is valid. On the other hand, Christianity believes that only Christianity (and therefore not relativism) is valid. Relativism states Christianity is one of many true beliefs, while Christianity states it is the only true belief, which only results in contradicting relativism's presupposition that Christianity is one of many truths. In simple terms: If A, then B. If B, then not A. (In this case, A is relativism, while B is a belief system such as Christianity or Islam.)
  • Another criticism is that modest admissions of disbelief are impossible. If it was true for me yesterday when I said, "I aced that exam", how can I say today "I failed the exam yesterday that I thought I did so well on"?

Self-refuting ideas are ideas or statements whose falsehood is a logical consequence of the act or situation of holding them to be true. ... The gas laws are a set of laws that describe the relationship between thermodynamic temperature (T), pressure (P) and volume (V) of gases. ... Natural law or the law of nature (Latin: lex naturalis) is an ethical theory that posits the existence of a law whose content is set by nature and that therefore has validity everywhere. ... Clinton Richard Dawkins (born March 26, 1941) is a British ethologist, evolutionary biologist and popular science writer who holds the Charles Simonyi Chair for the Public Understanding of Science at the University of Oxford. ... The God Delusion is a book by British biologist Richard Dawkins, Professor for the Public Understanding of Science at the University of Oxford. ... Clive Staples Lewis (November 29, 1898 – November 22, 1963), commonly referred to as C. S. Lewis, was an author and scholar. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Anomie, in contemporary English, means a condition or malaise in individuals, characterized by an absence or diminution of standards or values. ... Social Darwinism is the idea that Charles Darwins theory can be extended and applied to the social realm, i. ... Doublethink is an integral concept in George Orwells dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, and is the act of holding two contradictory beliefs simultaneously, fervently believing both. ... It has been suggested that Benign colonialism be merged into this article or section. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Christianity is... For people named Islam, see Islam (name). ...

Responses

  • Contradictions such as "all beliefs are equally worthless" are non-sensical, as they constitute arguing from the premise. Once you have said if the X is absolute (e.g. "all beliefs are equally worthless") you have presupposed relativism is false. And one cannot prove a statement using that statement as a premise. There is a contradiction, but the contradiction is between relativism and the presuppositions of absoluteness in the ordinary logic used. Nothing has been proven wrong and nothing has been proven in and of itself, only the known incompatibility has been restated inefficiently.
  • A very different approach explicates the rhetorical production of supposedly 'bottom-line' arguments against relativism. Edwards et al’s influential and controversial "Death and Furniture"[22] paper takes this line in its staunch defence of relativism. Part of the rhetoric discussed here involves the portrayal of relativists who say (for example), "torture is not an absolute evil", as saying, in effect, "we don't disapprove of torture as strongly as you do". Relativists argue that this is a rhetorical trick, akin to claiming "you can't throw out the bath water without throwing out the baby too": denying absolute truths still leaves relativists free to be utterly and passionately opposed to torture. However, if relativism is motivated by a belief in the primacy of non-interference with other cultures, relativists will not intervene to prevent culturally-sanctioned torture,and are therefore open to the objection that their response too weak compared to other responses. Some other motivation is needed for the objection to work.
  • A strong epistemological relativist could theoretically argue that it does not matter that his theory is only relative according to itself. As long as it remains "true" according to a relative framework, then it is just as true as any apparently "absolute" truth that a realist would postulate. The dispute lies in the distinction between whether the framework is relative or absolute, but if a realist could be persuaded it was relative, then the relativist theory could exist logically within that framework, albeit accepting that its "truth" is relative. A strong epistemological relativist must remove his own notions of universal truth if he is to embrace his theory fully, he must accept some form of truth to validate his theory logically, and this truth, by definition, must be relative. In other frameworks his theory might be regarded as untrue, and so the theory cannot exist here. Looked at from this perspective, with all notions and premises of universal truth removed, the notion of strong epistemological relativism is logically valid. What?

Part of the foundation of mathematics, Russells paradox (also known as Russells antinomy), discovered by Bertrand Russell in 1901, showed that the naive set theory of Frege leads to a contradiction. ... Kurt Gödel (IPA: ) (April 28, 1906 Brünn, Austria-Hungary (now Brno, Czech Republic) – January 14, 1978 Princeton, New Jersey) was an Austrian American mathematician and philosopher. ... Borges redirects here. ... Jean Baudrillard (July 29, 1929 – March 6, 2007) (IPA pronunciation: [1]) was a French cultural theorist, philosopher, political commentator, and photographer. ...

Theater and relativism

Relativism found its voice in theater through Pirandello who believed that nothing, neither time nor morals, is absolute. Luigi Pirandello (June 28, 1867 – December 10, 1936) was an Italian dramatist and novelist, awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1934. ...


Pirandello examines the relationship between reality, illusion and relativity, and we should not forget that Einstein’s theory of Relativity was popular in Pirandello’s day. Indeed Einstein reputedly went up to Pirandello after the performance of one of his plays and said to him ‘We are kindred souls.’


The Catholic Church and relativism

The Roman Catholic Church, especially under John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, has identified relativism as one of the most significant problems for faith and morals today. [23] Catholic Church redirects here. ... Official papal image of John Paul II. His Holiness Pope John Paul II, né Karol Józef Wojtyła (born May 18, 1920 in Wadowice, Poland), is the current Pope — the Bishop of Rome and head of the Roman Catholic Church. ... Papal Arms of Pope Benedict XVI. The papal tiara was replaced with a bishops mitre, and pallium of the Pope was added beneath the coat of arms. ...


According to the Church and to some philosophers, relativism, as a denial of absolute truth, leads to moral license and a denial of the possibility of sin and of God. Whether moral or epistemological, relativism constitutes a denial of the capacity of the human mind and reason to arrive at truth. Truth, according to Catholic theologians and philosophers (following Aristotle and Plato) consists of adequatio rei et intellectus, the correspondence of the mind and reality. Another way of putting it states that the mind has the same form as reality. This means when the form of the computer in front of me (the type, color, shape, capacity, etc.) is also the form that is in my mind, then what I know is true because my mind corresponds to objective reality. Possibility comprises that which one can achieve, or alternatively ones potential. ... For other uses, see Sin (disambiguation). ... This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... The correspondence theory of truth states that something (for example, a proposition or statement or sentence) is rendered true by the existence of a fact with corresponding elements and a similar structure. ... For other uses, see Mind (disambiguation). ... It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles accessible from a disambiguation page. ...


The denial of an absolute reference, of an axis mundi, denies God, who equates to Absolute Truth, according to these Christian philosophers. They link relativism to secularism, an obstruction of God in human life. This article is about secularism. ... Personal life (or everyday life or human existence) is an individual humans personal, private career (including, but not the same as, their employment career), and is a common notion in modern existence -- although more so in more prosperous parts of the world, such as Western Europe and North America...


John Paul II

John Paul II in Veritatis Splendor ("The Splendor of the Truth") stressed the dependence of man on God and his law ("Without the Creator, the creature disappears") and the "dependence of freedom on the truth". He warned that man "giving himself over to relativism and skepticism, goes off in search of an illusory freedom apart from truth itself". Coat of Arms of Pope John Paul II. The Letter M is for Mary, the mother of Jesus, to whom he held strong devotion Pope John Paul II (Latin: , Italian: Giovanni Paolo II, Polish: Jan PaweÅ‚ II) born   []; 18 May 1920 – 2 April 2005) reigned as the 264th Pope of... Veritatis Splendor (Latin: The Splendor of Truth) is the name of an encyclical by Pope John Paul II. It expresses the position of the Catholic Church regarding fundamentals of the Churchs role in moral teaching. ...


In Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life), he says: Evangelium Vitæ (Latin: The Gospel of Life) is the name of the encyclical written by Pope John Paul II which expresses the official position of the Catholic Church regarding the value and inviolability of human life. ...

The original and inalienable right to life is questioned or denied on the basis of a parliamentary vote or the will of one part of the people-even if it is the majority. This is the sinister result of a relativism which reigns unopposed: the "right" ceases to be such, because it is no longer firmly founded on the inviolable dignity of the person, but is made subject to the will of the stronger part. In this way democracy, contradicting its own principles, effectively moves towards a form of totalitarianism. The State is no longer the "common home" where all can live together on the basis of principles of fundamental equality, but is transformed into a tyrant State, which arrogates to itself the right to dispose of the life of the weakest and most defenceless members, from the unborn child to the elderly, in the name of a public interest which is really nothing but the interest of one part. [Italics added]

Benedict XVI

In April 2005, in his homily[24] during Mass prior to the conclave which would elect him as Pope, then Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger talked about the world "moving towards a dictatorship of relativism": Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Wycliffe Tyndale · Luther · Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Pope · Archbishop of Canterbury Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      The Pope (from Latin... Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (b. ...

How many winds of doctrine we have known in recent decades, how many ideological currents, how many ways of thinking. The small boat of thought of many Christians has often been tossed about by these waves ¬ thrown from one extreme to the other: from Marxism to liberalism, even to libertinism; from collectivism to radical individualism; from atheism to a vague religious mysticism; from agnosticism to syncretism, and so forth. Every day new sects are created and what Saint Paul says about human trickery comes true, with cunning which tries to draw those into error (cf Eph 4, 14). Having a clear faith, based on the Creed of the Church, is often labeled today as a fundamentalism. Whereas, relativism, which is letting oneself be tossed and "swept along by every wind of teaching", looks like the only attitude acceptable to today's standards. We are moving towards a dictatorship of relativism which does not recognize anything as certain and which has as its highest goal one's own ego and one's own desires. However, we have a different goal: the Son of God, true man. He is the measure of true humanism. Being an "Adult" means having a faith which does not follow the waves of today's fashions or the latest novelties. A faith which is deeply rooted in friendship with Christ is adult and mature. It is this friendship which opens us up to all that is good and gives us the knowledge to judge true from false, and deceit from truth.

On June 6, 2005, Pope Benedict XVI told educators: is the 157th day of the year (158th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...

"Today, a particularly insidious obstacle to the task of education is the massive presence in our society and culture of that relativism which, recognizing nothing as definitive, leaves as the ultimate criterion only the self with its desires. And under the semblance of freedom it becomes a prison for each one, for it separates people from one another, locking each person into his or her own 'ego'".[25]

Then during the World Youth Day in August 2005, he also traced to relativism the problems produced by the communist and sexual revolutions, and provided a counter-counter argument.[26] World Youth Day in Cologne The 20th World Youth Day 2005 was a Catholic youth festival that started on August 16 and continued until August 21, 2005 in Cologne, Germany. ...

In the last century we experienced revolutions with a common programme – expecting nothing more from God, they assumed total responsibility for the cause of the world in order to change it. And this, as we saw, meant that a human and partial point of view was always taken as an absolute guiding principle. Absolutizing what is not absolute but relative is called totalitarianism. It does not liberate man, but takes away his dignity and enslaves him. It is not ideologies that save the world, but only a return to the living God, our Creator, the guarantor of our freedom, the guarantor of what is really good and true.

Criticism

Some critics assert that Church documents suggest the position that to accept its version of morality is the only alternative to relativism. Veritatis Splendor, they say, insists that we must hold onto respect for certain fundamental goods, without which one would fall into relativism and arbitrariness where it is further insisted that sodomy, contraception, etc. necessarily violate such respect for goods such as life. Persons who accept the dichotomy between Catholic doctrines and relativism but disagree about which acts are anti-life might be inadvertently encouraged to adopt relativism. In actuality, critics say, many moral systems have been proposed as alternatives to relativism; see ethics and normative ethics for systems which reject both relativism and Catholic moral doctrines. Veritatis Splendor (Latin: The Splendor of Truth) is the name of an encyclical by Pope John Paul II. It expresses the position of the Catholic Church regarding fundamentals of the Churchs role in moral teaching. ... For other uses, see Ethics (disambiguation). ... Normative ethics is the branch of the philosophical study of ethics concerned with classifying actions as right and wrong, as opposed to descriptive ethics. ...


Notes/References

  1. ^ physicsworld.com
  2. ^ Locke, Shaftesbury, and Hutcheson: Contesting Diversity in the Enlightenment and Beyond by Dr. Daniel Carey
  3. ^ Methodological and Philosophical Relativism by Gananath Obeyesekere
  4. ^ Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
  5. ^ SGGS page 1350
  6. ^ Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Paul Feyerabend
  7. ^ Feyerabend, P. Against Method, p. 296
  8. ^ Feyerabend, P. Against Method p. 231
  9. ^ Kuhn, S. Structure of Scientific Revolutions, p. 158
  10. ^ Sharrock. W., Read R. Kuhn: Philosopher of Scientific Revolutions
  11. ^ Rorty, R. Hilary Putnam and the Relativist Menace
  12. ^ Sokal A. (1996). "Transgressing the Boundaries: Towards a Transformative Hermeneutics of Quantum Gravity". Social Text 46/47: 217-252. 
  13. ^ Sokal and the Science Wars
  14. ^ Quantum quackery
  15. ^ Christian Apologetics Research Ministry.
  16. ^ Craig Rusbult. Reality 101
  17. ^ Keith Dixon. Is Cultural Relativism Self-Refuting? (British Journal of Sociology, vol 28, No. 1)
  18. ^ Cultural Relativism at All About Philosophy.
  19. ^ The Friesian School on relativism.
  20. ^ The God Delusion, Chapter 6
  21. ^ Mere Christianity, Chapter 1
  22. ^ http://www-staff.lboro.ac.uk/~ssde/Death%20and%20furniture.pdf
  23. ^ http://www.nationalcatholicreporter.org/word/wyd082105.htm
  24. ^ [1]
  25. ^ [2]
  26. ^ [3]
  • Relativism, cognitive and moral, edited Jack W. Meiland & Michael Krausz, Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1982
  • Rationality, relativism, and the human sciences, edited by Joseph Margolis, M. Krausz, R.M. Burian. Dordrecht: Boston, M. Nijhoff, 1986
  • Rationality and Relativism, Hollis, Martin and Lukes, Stephen, ed., Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1982.
  • Varieties of Relativism, ed. Rom Harré. Oxford, UK; New York, NY: Blackwell, 1996

The God Delusion is a book by British biologist Richard Dawkins, Professor for the Public Understanding of Science at the University of Oxford. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Image File history File links Broom_icon. ... The International Standard Book Number, or ISBN (sometimes pronounced is-ben), is a unique[1] identifier for books, intended to be used commercially. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ...

See also

Anthropology (from Greek: ἀνθρωπος, anthropos, human being; and λόγος, logos, knowledge) is the study of humanity. ... In philosophy, moral relativism is the position that moral or ethical propositions do not reflect objective and/or universal moral truths, but instead make claims relative to social, cultural, historical or personal circumstances. ... Contemporary philosophical realism, also referred to as metaphysical realism, is the belief in a reality that is completely ontologically independent of our conceptual schemes, linguistic practices, beliefs, etc. ... For the learning theory, see Social Constructivism (Learning Theory). ... The Science wars were a series of intellectual battles in the 1990s between postmodernists and realists (though neither party would likely use the terms to describe themselves) about the nature of scientific theories. ... This article is about the radio show. ... This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ...

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Relativism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy) (18066 words)
Normative relativism is a family of non-empirical normative or evaluative claims to the effect that modes of thought, standards of reasoning, or the like are only right or wrong, correct or incorrect, veridical or non-veridical, relative to a framework.
Descriptive semantic relativism, as we will use the phrase, is the empirical claim that different groups, e.g., people living at different times or in different cultures, sometimes have different beliefs about the meaning of a word (where words are individuated independently of their meanings by such things as pronunciation or spelling).
Relativism about truth boils down to relativism about belief, but rather different sets of issues are typically connected with central beliefs or principles, on the one hand, and issues about relative truth, on the other.
Moral Relativism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy) (10688 words)
Appraiser relativism suggests that we do or should make moral judgments on the basis of our own standards, while agent relativism implies that the relevant standards are those of the persons we are judging (of course, in some cases these may coincide).
Harman's relativism is presented as a thesis about logical form, but the relativist implication arises only because it is supposed that the relevant motivating reasons are not universal and so probably arose from an agreement that some but not all persons have made.
Relativism is sometimes associated with a normative position, usually pertaining to how people ought to regard or behave towards those with whom they morally disagree.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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