Knowledge in a Social World

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9780198238201: Knowledge in a Social World

Knowledge in a Social World offers a philosophy for the information age. Alvin Goldman explores new frontiers by creating a thoroughgoing social epistemology, moving beyond the traditional focus on solitary knowers. Social, cultural, and technological changes present new challenges to our ways of knowing and understanding, and philosophy must face these challenges. Against the tides of postmodernism and social constructionism Goldman defends the integrity of truth and shows how to promote it by well-designed forms of social interaction. He urges that social discourse promises more than the mere politics of consensus, and that suitably norm-governed debate and belief-revision can increase veridical knowledge.

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About the Author:


Alvin I. Goldman is one of the world's foremost epistemologists; he is Regents Professor of Philosophy at the University of Arizona, and a Past President of the Pacific Division of the American Philosophical Association.

Review:

"An important work of monumental scope. Its central concern is the ways in which social practices and familiar institutions contribute to and undermine the pursuit of knowledge. To that extent it reveals a sensitivity to the animating, if ultimately misdirected and misleading, insight of the
postmodernists that we are socially situated beings; at the same time it brilliantly defends the idea that this fact about our situatedness does nothing to undermine the possibility of truth and objective knowledge. This is a book of singular importance to lawyers, political theorists, social and
natural scientists as well as to educators and theorists of education. It is a major contribution to all these fields and not just because of its insights into them, but for its accessibility to intelligent practitioners as well. It may well be the most significant interdisciplinary philosophy book
of the decade."--Jules Coleman, Yale Law School
"Alvin Goldman, the premier epistemologist of the past two decades, has written a pioneering book that will define the field of social epistemology. Scholars will learn from his judicious and lucid proposals, and they will be wrestling for years with the exciting and important problems he
raises."--Philip Kitcher
"Until the late twentieth century social epistemology was a neglected subject. . . . The scope of Goldman's discussion and the characterstic clarity with which he approaches the issues make this book the first classic in the field."--Philosophy and Phenomenological Research
"An important work of monumental scope. Its central concern is the ways in which social practices and familiar institutions contribute to and undermine the pursuit of knowledge. To that extent it reveals a sensitivity to the animating, if ultimately misdirected and misleading, insight of the
postmodernists that we are socially situated beings; at the same time it brilliantly defends the idea that this fact about our situatedness does nothing to undermine the possibility of truth and objective knowledge. This is a book of singular importance to lawyers, political theorists, social and
natural scientists as well as to educators and theorists of education. It is a major contribution to all these fields and not just because of its insights into them, but for its accessibility to intelligent practitioners as well. It may well be the most significant interdisciplinary philosophy book
of the decade."--Jules Coleman, Yale Law School
"Alvin Goldman, the premier epistemologist of the past two decades, has written a pioneering book that will define the field of social epistemology. Scholars will learn from his judicious and lucid proposals, and they will be wrestling for years with the exciting and important problems he
raises."--Philip Kitcher
"Until the late twentieth century social epistemology was a neglected subject. . . . The scope of Goldman's discussion and the characterstic clarity with which he approaches the issues make this book the first classic in the field."--Philosophy and Phenomenological Research
"An important work of monumental scope. Its central concern is the ways in which social practices and familiar institutions contribute to and undermine the pursuit of knowledge. To that extent it reveals a sensitivity to the animating, if ultimately misdirected and misleading, insight of the postmodernists that we are socially situated beings; at the same time it brilliantly defends the idea that this fact about our situatedness does nothing to undermine the possibility of truth and objective knowledge. This is a book of singular importance to lawyers, political theorists, social and natural scientists as well as to educators and theorists of education. It is a major contribution to all these fields and not just because of its insights into them, but for its accessibility to intelligent practitioners as well. It may well be the most significant interdisciplinary philosophy book of the decade."--Jules Coleman, Yale Law School
"Alvin Goldman, the premier epistemologist of the past two decades, has written a pioneering book that will define the field of social epistemology. Scholars will learn from his judicious and lucid proposals, and they will be wrestling for years with the exciting and important problems he raises."--Philip Kitcher
"Until the late twentieth century social epistemology was a neglected subject. . . . The scope of Goldman's discussion and the characterstic clarity with which he approaches the issues make this book the first classic in the field."--Philosophy and Phenomenological Research
"An important work of monumental scope. Its central concern is the ways in which social practices and familiar institutions contribute to and undermine the pursuit of knowledge. To that extent it reveals a sensitivity to the animating, if ultimately misdirected and misleading, insight of the postmodernists that we are socially situated beings; at the same time it brilliantly defends the idea that this fact about our situatedness does nothing to undermine the possibility of truth and objective knowledge. This is a book of singular importance to lawyers, political theorists, social and natural scientists as well as to educators and theorists of education. It is a major contribution to all these fields and not just because of its insights into them, but for its accessibility to intelligent practitioners as well. It may well be the most significant interdisciplinary philosophy book of the decade."--Jules Coleman, Yale Law School


"Alvin Goldman, the premier epistemologist of the p

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