n Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe - Relativisme as epistemologiese probleem

Volume 46, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0041-4751


Relativism is examined as it manifests itself in two phases. Both regard the contextuality of culture as normative. The second and post-modern phase deconstructs the normative epistemological role of the world and situates normativity completely in the community. This is the crux of the current relativist debate. Rorty's view on dualism is examined. It is concluded that relativism's equation of objectivity with objectivism is untenable and that certainty alone is insufficient to guarantee reliable knowledge. Positive insights of the second relativist phase are the non-algorithmic and unforced agreement of scientists. The total divergence and asymmetry thesis is incompatible with the universality of logic and other theoretical values. Relativism does not sufficiently account for the success and progress of science.

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