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Science and the Postmodern Challenge

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Author(s): Anthony Idoko Okpanachi

Journal: Studies in Sociology of Science
ISSN 1923-0176

Volume: 3;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 67;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: Science | Objectivity | Modernism and Postmodernism

ABSTRACT
The issue of objectivity of any knowledge claim remains heavily controversial in academic circles. Science and its practitioners claim to be objective, value free and able to attain definite or certain knowledge as opposed to mere opinion/belief whereas such pretensions are contended by the postmodern disposition that insists on the impossibility of definite/certain knowledge and objectivity. Postmodern thinking favours multiculturalism, relativism and a worldview in which claims of truth are contested. How does science respond to these critical matters and what are the prospects of science in the future in the face of these hurdles? What are some of the presuppositions of science that tend to obliterate its claim to certain and objective knowledge? How defensible and justifiable are some of the challenges that post modern thinking bring forth to be confronted by any epistemological endeavour that must be taken seriously as far the issue of objectivity and certainty are concerned? These are among the queries the paper seeks to answer in view of assessing the extent to which the tenuous tension can be appreciated and resolved. The exercise hopes to achieve this using the analytical and critical tools of philosophy.Key words: Science; Objectivity; Modernism and Postmodernism
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