Realism and the strong program

The four tenets of the Strong Program are compatible with a scientific realism founded on an externalist epistemology. Such an epistemology allows that appropriate norms of rationality may differ from time to time, and from community to community, and thereby enables the realist to embrace strong forms of the ‘symmetry principle’. It also suggests a fruitful collaborative research program in externalist social epistemology. Some of what the Edinburgh School says about truth can also be accepted. But the realist should reject the School's argument for the claim that there is no distinction between being rational and being locally accepted as rational, which seems to rest on a kind of epistemological internalism. Introducing the Strong Program Realism and the four tenets A stronger reading of symmetry Conflict and cooperation A note on discovery and justification Relativism and realism Truth Points of contention: the restriction of explanatory contrasts Points of contention: standards of rationality.
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DOI 10.1093/bjps/axi125
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Tim Lewens (2012). The Darwinian View of Culture. Biology and Philosophy 27 (5):745-753.

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