By Mark Hobart

ISBN-10: 9798139542

ISBN-13: 9789798139543

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Extra info for After Culture: Anthropology as Radical Metaphysical Critique

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Thus the mediating third party is simply not to be found: either it turns out to be an elusive ghost (‘reality’), or it is just one further language, with 49 Kuhn introduced the practices of scientists under the rubric of paradigms in order to be able to allow for them and so get nearer to history- or ‘culture-’ free knowledge. Arguably, taking practices seriously leads either towards a position like Feyerabend’s conclusion of radical incommensurability (1975) or to the breakdown of the distinction of theory and practice itself, something long urged by Collingwood (see Boucher 1992).

If you are, say, a historian of Ancient Rome, you do 41 not become an ancient Roman any more than by working in Bali for years I become a Balinese villager. What is at issue is twofold. First it is how far I have learnt to think about matters they regard as important in the way Balinese I have worked with have thought about them. Second, it is how I rethink such thoughts in terms of current scholarly concerns and how this changes my understanding of the presuppositions involved in my own thinking.

47 I hope that it should be clear that this approach is neither positivist nor committed to an empiricist metaphysics (a wildly Rococo assemblage). As one can ask questions without knowing it, and a fortiori without knowing what questions one is asking, so one can make presuppositions without knowing it, and a fortiori without knowing what presuppositions one is making (Collingwood 1940: 26). Metaphysical inquiry involves inference, which must always be provisional. There is nothing to say that styles of logic are universal or that we can presume to understand others using our own (Chapter 3).

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After Culture: Anthropology as Radical Metaphysical Critique by Mark Hobart


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