Philosophy Lexicon of Arguments

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Relativism, philosophy: relativism is a collective term for views that generally refer to the conditions which are fundamental for the occurrence of these views. Variants are based on theories, on languages, on social groups or on cultures. See also internal realism, externalism, observational language, cultural relativism, idealization.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

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Books on Amazon:
Richard Rorty
I 304
Relativism: The assertion that truth and reference are "relative to a conceptual system" sounds as if it said more. But that is not the case as long as our system of concepts simply stands for the things which we currently believe.
II 36
RortyVsHabermas: needs an Archimedean point to criticize Foucault for his "relativism".
II 152
Cultural relativism: is not relativistic as long as relativism amounts to the assertion that every moral view is as good as any other. Rorty: our moral conception is much better than any competing view. It’s one thing to make the false assertion that there is no difference between us and the Nazis. A very different thing is to represent the correct assertion that there is no neutral common ground on which a Nazi and I can retreat to discuss.
III 87
Schumpeter: "the insight that the validity of one’s own beliefs is only relative, and yet stand up for them fearlessly, distinguishes a civilized man from a barbarian" Berlin: one must not ask for more.
IV 11
Relativism/cultural relativism/RortyVsPutnam: false solution: a transcultural point of view. - That would be just another God point of view: ideal truth as limiting concept.
V 20
Cultures have no axiomatic structures. The fact that they have institutionalized norms actually says the same thing as Foucault’s thesis: that knowledge and power can never be separated. If you do not believe in certain things at a certain place at a certain time, you probably have to atone for it.
VI 74
Relativism/Realism/PutnamVsRealism/PutnamVsRelativism/Rorty: both assume that one could simultaneously be both inside and outside language.
VI 77f
Fascism/relativism/truth/Sartre/Rorty: E.g. tomorrow, after my death, people can decide to introduce fascism - then fascism will be the human truth. - RortyVsSartre: not the truth - the truth would have been forgotten. - Putnam: Truth is a third instance between the camps. - RortyVsPutnam: correctness instead of truth - namely, according to our standards. - According to what other standards, teh ones of the fascists?.
VI 79
Justification of the standards/Rorty: from our self-improvement.
VI 246
Cultural relativism/Rorty: I am of the opinion that our Western culture is more than others.
But this kind of relativism is not irrationalism. One does not have to be an irrationalist if one abstains from making one’s own network of beliefs as coherent and transparent as possible.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.

Ro I
R. Rorty
Der Spiegel der Natur Frankfurt 1997

R. Rorty
Philosophie & die Zukunft Frankfurt 2000

R. Rorty
Kontingenz, Ironie und Solidarität Frankfurt 1992

R. Rorty
Eine Kultur ohne Zentrum Stuttgart 1993

Ro V
R. Rorty
Solidarität oder Objektivität? Stuttgart 1998

R. Rorty
Wahrheit und Fortschritt Frankfurt 2000

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2017-11-18