Hilary Putnam: Objectivity and the Science–Ethics Distinction

Lorenz Krüger

in The Quality of Life

Published in print March 1993 | ISBN: 9780198287971
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191596704 | DOI:

Series: WIDER Studies in Development Economics

  Hilary Putnam: Objectivity and the Science–Ethics Distinction

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Krüger evaluates whether Putnam succeeds in showing that unified concepts of objectivity and rationality can be developed for science and ethics, questioning whether it is desirable or advisable to insist on the ideal of the unified scientific–ethical enterprise. Krüger objects to Putnam's conclusion of the existence of a unified domain of rationally assertable truths because he sees it as a sweeping extrapolation of the correct observation that entanglements of fact and value are inextricable. Krüger further claims that Putnam's renewed attempt at unifying human reason would work against cultural pluralism, which is not desirable.

Keywords: metaphysics; objectivity; pluralism; rationality; truth; unity

Chapter.  3309 words. 

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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