Aspects Of Enlightenment: Social Theory And The Ethics Of - download pdf or read online

By Thomas Osbourne

ISBN-10: 185728853X

ISBN-13: 9781857288537

This can be an introductory account of social concept and the imperative function of enlightenment inside it. Tom Osborne argues that: modern social concept can basically fail whilst considered as a ''science of society'', and instead of focusing upon the query of society or perhaps ''modernity'' may still specialise in the query of human nature. the main fast and critical subject of this sort of social thought may be the query of enlightenment.; even if, the publication departs from conventional money owed finding the vocation of social conception within the method of values proven within the unique Enlightenment by means of the French philosophers and others.; fairly it makes a powerful argument for the moral prestige of enlightenment, happening to investigate specific ''regimes of enlightenment'' in modernity, specifically these linked to the social ethics of technology, services, mind and artwork.

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Chapter 2 Aspects of scientific enlightenment Ours appears to be both a scientific and an anti-scientific age. We are surrounded by evidence of what the sociologist Bruno Latour calls “science already made”—cars, space rockets, televisions, central heating, computers, light bulbs, cancer treatments and all the expert and technological paraphernalia of the modern world. But does this mean that ours is an age that is actually “enlightened” by the natural sciences? Many people would say not. Scientists themselves apply for grants to further “public understanding” of their activities, young people blow up laboratories in protest at animal experiments, sociologists write tracts about the limits of science and the waning of the public’s faith in scientists, and the majority of the US population appear to believe that they have been abducted by flying saucers.

He is like Julian Benda, that arch scourge of the treachery of intellectuals, arguing for the “Platonic-universalist metaphysics of binding, eternal values” but on grounds not of actual knowledge but of expediency: that is, in terms not of truth or falsity but of the regrettable effects that so-called irrationalists get into when they question the truth (Gellner 1990:21; cf. Gellner 1992a:129–32). As Gellner insists in his nice discussion of the ethics of this matter, we can act in good faith, as with Nietzsche, even in attempting to get rid of the truth, and in bad faith—as with many of the anti-postmodernists—by protesting too much in the name of the truth.

As Blumenberg observes, this conception of truth is endemically open-ended: “False trust in the world—that is the dominant concern in Bacon’s momentous exclusion of the teleological view of nature” (1983:384). Yet it is simultaneously connected to a great sense of trust in the eventual appearance of the truth: the image of contemporary voyages of discovery dominates Bacon’s thought. No assumption of an unknown goal guides the ship’s voyage; rather the compass enables one to hold to a path on which, in the field of the unknown, new land will eventually appear.

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Aspects Of Enlightenment: Social Theory And The Ethics Of Truth by Thomas Osbourne

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