David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophy of the Social Sciences 39 (4):595-621 (2009)
Despite the extensive commentary on the work of Peter Winch, there has been inadequate recognition of how his Idea of a Social Science discerned the implications of Wittgenstein’s philosophy for confronting issues regarding the nature and interpretation of social phenomena. Winch’s subsequent confrontation with anthropology can be further illuminated by examining one of the most contentious contemporary debates in this field. This case illustrates the paradoxes involved in meta-practices such as philosophy and social science seeking to make descriptive and normative claims about conceptually preconstituted forms of life, and it indicates the limitations of philosophical realism as a social scientific meta-theory
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