4.08.2012

Truth is what we find it impossible not to believe

"Truth is what we find it impossible not to believe"

This is really well said, with rich implications for scholars of epistemic rhetoric:

There’s a lot here to untangle, but what I want to focus on is this knotty question of “truth”. This is a huge simplification, but pragmatist philosophers (people like John Dewey, Charles Peirce, William James) essentially believed that truth—social truths, not stuff like 2+2=4—cannot live in the head of any one individual or system of knowledge. Essentially, the very idea of truth (what people understand to be a fact) is tightly linked to epistemology (how people come to know). Truth is what we find it impossible not to believe. It’s what our minds, hearts, friends, families, classes, races, ethics, ideologies, histories, and imagined futures demand that must believe, if we are to be functioning people in society. Truth is what makes us act, makes us do things in the world to achieve change. Truth isn’t a mirror of reality, it’s what we can’t doubt.

Mike Ananny, in “Doubting the Impossible: Mike Daisey, the Pragmatists, and Networked Ways of Knowing.”

No comments:

Post a Comment