Knowledge versus survival

Inquiry 16 (1-4):407 – 414 (1973)
Our biological survival is often taken as an argument in favour of the validity of our present conceptual scheme and cognitive frame of reference. A twofold counterargument is offered: (1) Given any notion of ?knowledge?, ?insight?, etc. within our present scheme, it is possible, even plausible, that such ?knowledge? and ?insight? be extended and perfected beyond what is beneficial to the survival of mankind; (2) The alleged link between survival and veridicality is not logical but contingent and tenuously tangential. Since the prevailing scheme may prove to serve ends not just other than, but opposed to survival, e.g. the end of unmasking the world and man's lot therein, survivalism may require a radical reconsideration of that scheme, including its prejudice in favour of survival. From the point of view of all current schemes or frames of reference, such a project appears inherently paradoxical
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DOI 10.1080/00201747308601692
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