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eBook Objectivity: The Obligations of Impersonal Reason (102) ePub

eBook Objectivity: The Obligations of Impersonal Reason (102) ePub

by Nicholas Rescher

  • ISBN: 0268037035
  • Category: Philosophy
  • Subcategory: Politics
  • Author: Nicholas Rescher
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: University of Notre Dame Press (January 1, 1997)
  • Pages: 230
  • ePub book: 1290 kb
  • Fb2 book: 1912 kb
  • Other: rtf azw lit mobi
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Votes: 940

Description

Objectivity: The Obligations of Impersonal Reason (102). Nicholas Rescher is Distinguished University Professor of Philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh and co-chairman of the Center for Philosophy of Science.

Objectivity: The Obligations of Impersonal Reason (102). A member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, he has served as president of the Eastern Division of the American Philosophical Association, the Leibniz Society of North America, the Charles S. Peirce Society, the American Catholic Philosophical Association, and the Metaphysical Society of America.

Objectivity : The Obligations of Impersonal Reason. Philosopher Nicholas Rescher presents an original pragmatic defense of objectivity. He employs reasoned argumentation in making the case for restoring objectivity to a place of prominence in philosophic and social discourse. By tracing it back to the very core of rationality itself, Rescher locates objectivity?s reason for being deep in our nature as rational animals.

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I argue that it is seriously unclear whether the obligations imposed on welfare claimants by 'workfare' schemes are legitimate and justified according to the principle of reciprocity ) for the obligations of the unemployed put forward in both the United Kingdom and Australia. Political Obligation in Philosophy of Law. Value Theory.

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Objectivity: the obligations of impersonal reason. Notre Dame: Notre Dame Press, 1977. Objectivity, Relativism, and Truth. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991 Rousset, Bernard. La thorie kantienne de l'objectivit, Paris: Vrin, 1967.

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The Obligations of Impersonal Reason. Interpretation und Realität. Erläuterungen zur sophie. In Book VI of the Republic, Plato begins his exploration of the principles in accordance with which the city must be governed if it is to be an enduring and autonomous embodiment of the various forms of excellence of which men, individually and collectively, arc (at least in approximation) capable. These principles have a two-fold status.

Chicago Distribution Center. Objectivity: The Obligations of Impersonal Reason. Notre Dame, In. University of Notre Dame Press, 1997. Learn More at LibraryThing. ISBN 9780268037017 (978-0-268-03701-7) Hardcover, University of Notre Dame Press, 1997. Find signed collectible books: 'Objectivity: The Obligations of Impersonal Reason'. Nicholas Rescher at LibraryThing.

Philosopher Nicholas Rescher presents an original pragmatic defense of objectivity. He employs reasoned argumentation in making the case for restoring objectivity to a place of prominence in philosophic and social discourse. By tracing it back to the very core of rationality itself, Rescher locates objectivity’s reason for being deep in our nature as rational animals.

Comments

Runeterror Runeterror
Nicholas Rescher, probably the single most prolific author among contemporary philosophers, here provides a sturdy defense of objectivity based on the primacy and inevitability of practical reason.
His concern here is with _epistemic_ objectivity -- that is, "not with the _subject matter_ of a claim but with its _justification_." What such objectivity calls for, he contends, is "not allowing the indications of reason, reasonableness, and good common sense to be deflected by 'purely subjective' whims, biases, prejudices, preferences, etc." As he is at pains to show, objectivity does not rule out personal values and commitments; indeed, if it did, there would be no hope of our achieving it, as "[t]he 'God's-eye view' on things is unavailable -- at any rate to us." On the contrary, being "objective" is a matter of proceeding, he says, "how we _should_ -- and how reasonable people _would_ -- proceed if they were in our shoes in the relevant regards."
Objectivity hinges on rationality -- as a matter not simply of logical coherence, but also "of the intelligent pursuit of circumstantially appropriate objectives." From its requirements follows a sort of "rational economy," the principles of which are very obviously objective and universal although they may (and do) have different applications in different situations.
On this foundation, Rescher takes on a host of contemporary critics of objectivity -- anthropologists, historicists, sociologists of knowledge, personalists, feminists, Marxists and class-interest theorists, post-modernists, and social activists. He finds that each attack on objectivity involves a misconstruing of what it is all about, and devotes the remainder of the volume to showing why this is the case.
Space will not permit a summary of the following ten chapters, in which Rescher deals by turns with various sorts of relativism, places cognitive objectivity on a ground of ontological objectivity, and argues that the "self-reliance of rationality is not viciously circular" -- objectivity and rationality are self-supporting in a _virtuously_ circular fashion.
As always, Rescher's presentation is clear and cogent. It will be of interest to a wide class of philosophical readers, and also to one other class I shall single out for special mention.
Pseudophilosopher Ayn Rand was pleased to name her own pseudophilosophy "Objectivism," in the incorrect belief that she had actually arrived at a genuine understanding of objectivity. In fact she had done no such thing, and Rescher's work on one particular sort of objectivity is a sure cure for readers who have been infected by her own subjectivism.
(I'm singling the Randroids out because somebody is going through all my reviews and clicking "Not helpful" on any in which I say anything negative about Rand. Click away, you objective Objectivist, you!)
Stonewing Stonewing
It was, I believe, Bertrand Ruseel who said something to the effect of, "There are two types of philosophers. Those who divide everything into two types and those that doen't." Rescher is more or less that second type. On ones side there is the objectivist who sees things as context independent; then you have the subjectivist who doesn't. Rescher is....well....a bit of both.
His main point is to outlay a positive philosophy of objectivity (that is, the objectivity of knowledge) while making room for cognitive pluralism. The point being that one can, says Rescher, be an objectivist who believes that not all knowledge is of a subjective kind while realizing that a.) we see the world from our (not, say, God's) point of view, b.) that the objectivity of the world is not a proven thing, but a pragmatically necessary assumption on our parts, and c.) that our knowledge is tentative as we never know which beliefs we hold will turn out falsified later. The problem is that subjectivists exagerate these claims and use them as "proof" that may only suggest in a subjective form and by extension, that reason must be subjective too ("Your reason is different than mine!"). Nonsense!
Rescher also tackles the 'circularity of arguments about rason. First, he outlays: "What is reason?" The answer is circular but not troublingly so. "Reason is being rational; or, doing what any rational person would do in your situation." So when we ask what is reason, we find that is is being rational. But when we then ask why be rational, we are answered with, "Because its the reasonable thing to do." Rescher doesn't see this as troubling; in fact, he said we should expect nothing but a circle here. If it wasn't circular, we could justify our preference for reason without reason, in which case, why wouldn't we just use THAT facutly? A circle shows us that it is difficult to get away from reason and even when we don't want to use it, say, we gnerally try to do so by rational justification. When relativists try to give us a reason to abandon reason (and how many books have been written for just that purpose), they are biting the hand that slaps them.
From here, Rescher spends a chapter on tackling relativist arguments (cultural, historical, feminist, class interest, etc.). Unlike the current popularity, Rescher is very respectful, cogent, and almost humble here. Next, Rescher spends the next half of the book talking about cognitive objectivism (in its pragmatic form) and ethical relativism. For my money, I don't feel as comfortable with Rescher when he moves into ethics. These sections felt rushed and I'm not sure they left me convinced. Still, even minus those chapters (which you still, of course, may like) this book is worth your money and time.