anyone interested in a careful assessment for the considerations for and against social constructivism would do well to begin with Boghossian's book. ( Mark McEvoy, Metaphilosophy)
is a clear and compelling work. ( Travis Dumsday, Science Et Esprit)
This is a great book for a seminar or discussion group. And its about time that someone wrote it. Happily, it was someone with Boghossians clarity, verve, and panache. ( Graham Priest, Review of Metaphysics 25/07/07)
...the book does a fine job of assessing in brief compass the sort of relativism/constructivism advocated by Rorty and his fellow travelers, and Boghossian's sophisticated and careful arguments against that Rortian view are often ingenious and invariably telling. Aimed at non-specialists, ( Harvey Siegel, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews)
If only Boghossian's eminently reasonable book were required reading for every freshman considering entrance into the humanities... ( Ars Disputandi)
In both subject matter and execution, this book promises to become a small classic of philosophical analysis. ( Choice)
For all its sophistication and erudition, the writing is remarkably clear, free of specialized jargon, and accessible to nonspecialist readers. ( Choice)
...lucid and effective ... ( Times Literary Supplement)
This is a book that can be read in an afternoon and thought about for a lifetime. ( Wall Street Journal)
...a tour de force: subtle and originalbut accessible enough to be read by anyone with an interest in the subject. ( Wall Street Journal)
...this is an important book that should be widely read. ( Philosophers' Magazine)
Boghossian has written an excellent book ... it contains relentless exposures of confusion, falsehood, and incoherence. ( John R. Searle, New York Review of Books)
Relativist and constructivist conceptions of truth and knowledge have become orthodoxy in vast stretches of the academic world in recent times. In his long-awaited first book, Paul Boghossian critically examines such views and exposes their fundamental flaws.
Boghossian focuses on three different ways of reading the claim that knowledge is socially constructed - one as a thesis about truth and two about justification. And he rejects all three. The intuitive, common-sense view is that there is a way the world is that is independent of human opinion; and that we are capable of arriving at beliefs about how it is that are objectively reasonable, binding on anyone capable of appreciating the relevant evidence regardless of their social or cultural perspective. Difficult as these notions may be, it is a mistake to think that philosophy has uncovered powerful reasons for rejecting them.
This short, lucid, witty book shows that philosophy provides rock-solid support for common sense against the relativists. It will prove provocative reading throughout the discipline and beyond.
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