“Trust Me—I’m a Public Intellectual”: Margaret Atwood’s and David Suzuki’s Social Epistemologies of Climate Science
In Michael Keren & Richard Hawkins (eds.), Speaking Power to Truth: Digital Discourse and the Public Intellectual. Athabasca University Press. pp. 113-128 (2015)
AbstractMargaret Atwood and David Suzuki are two of the most prominent Canadian public intellectuals involved in the global warming debate. They both argue that anthropogenic global warming is occurring, warn against its grave consequences, and urge governments and the public to take immediate, decisive, extensive, and profound measures to prevent it. They differ, however, in the reasons and evidence they provide in support of their position. While Suzuki stresses the scientific evidence in favour of the global warming theory and the scientific consensus around it, Atwood is suspicious of the objectivity of science, and draws on an idiosyncratic neo-Malthusian theory of human development. Their implicit views about the cognitive authority of science may be identified with Critical Contextual Empiricism and Feminist Standpoint Epistemology, respectively, both of which face difficulties with providing solid grounds for the position they advocate. .
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Citations of this work
The Social Epistemology of Consensus and Dissent.Boaz Miller - 2019 - In David Henderson, Peter Graham, Miranda Fricker & Nikolaj Jang Lee Linding Pedersen (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Social Epistemology. New York: Routledge. pp. 228-237.
Expert Trespassing Testimony and the Ethics of Science Communication.Mikkel Gerken - 2018 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 49 (3):299-318.
Values and Objectivity in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.Julie Jebeile - 2020 - Social Epistemology 34 (5):453-468.
When Is Scientific Dissent Epistemically Inappropriate?Boaz Miller - 2021 - Philosophy of Science 88 (5):918-928.
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Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues From Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming.Naomi Oreskes & Erik M. Conway - 2010 - Bloomsbury Press.