From Paradigm-Based Explanation to Pragmatic Genealogy

Mind 129 (515):683-714 (2020)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

Why would philosophers interested in the points or functions of our conceptual practices bother with genealogical explanations if they can focus directly on paradigmatic examples of the practices we now have?? To answer this question, I compare the method of pragmatic genealogy advocated by Edward Craig, Bernard Williams, and Miranda Fricker—a method whose singular combination of fictionalising and historicising has met with suspicion—with the simpler method of paradigm-based explanation. Fricker herself has recently moved towards paradigm-based explanation, arguing that it is a more perspicuous way of reaping the same explanatory pay-off as pragmatic genealogy while dispensing with its fictionalising and historicising. My aim is to determine when and why the reverse movement from paradigm-based explanation to pragmatic genealogy remains warranted. I argue that the fictionalising and historicising of pragmatic genealogy is well motivated, and I outline three ways in which the method earns its keep: by successfully handling historically inflected practices which paradigm-based explanation cannot handle; by revealing and arguing for connections to generic needs we might otherwise miss; and by providing comprehensive views of practices that place and relate the respects in which they serve both generic and local needs.

Similar books and articles

Genealogy and Knowledge-First Epistemology: A Mismatch?Matthieu Queloz - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (274):100-120.
Nietzsche’s Pragmatic Genealogy of Justice.Matthieu Queloz - 2017 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 25 (4):727-749.
Genealogy, phenomenology, critical theory.David Couzens Hoy - 2008 - Journal of the Philosophy of History 2 (3):276-294.
Understanding genealogy: History, power, and the self.Martin Saar - 2008 - Journal of the Philosophy of History 2 (3):295-314.
Abstraction and the Method of Genealogy.Jordan Liz - 2017 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 55 (S1):98-102.
The Genealogy of Abstractive Practices.Mary Beth Mader - 2017 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 55 (S1):86-97.

Analytics

Added to PP
2018-11-20

Downloads
2,619 (#2,869)

6 months
423 (#3,865)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Matthieu Queloz
University of Bern

Citations of this work

Nietzsche’s Conceptual Ethics.Matthieu Queloz - 2023 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 66 (7):1335-1364.
Left Wittgensteinianism.Matthieu Queloz & Damian Cueni - 2021 - European Journal of Philosophy 29 (4):758-777.
Whence the Demand for Ethical Theory?Damian Cueni & Matthieu Queloz - 2021 - American Philosophical Quarterly 58 (2):135-46.
The Points of Concepts: Their Types, Tensions, and Connections.Matthieu Queloz - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (8):1122-1145.

View all 17 citations / Add more citations

References found in this work

Philosophical Investigations.Ludwig Wittgenstein - 1953 - New York, NY, USA: Wiley-Blackwell. Edited by G. E. M. Anscombe.
Models in Science (2nd edition).Roman Frigg & Stephan Hartmann - 2021 - The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

View all 100 references / Add more references