Archives For Louise Antony

Author Information: Naomi Scheman, University of Minnesota,

Scheman, Naomi. 2013. “Reply to Louise Antony.” Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 2 (9): 1-11.

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Please refer to:


I would like to thank Louise Antony for her characteristically thorough and thoughtful response to my paper. That the problems I point to are political is something we agree about, as I am reasonably sure we largely agree both about diagnoses and about desirable directions of change; where we disagree is in my seeing those problems as also, and inextricably, epistemological. I suspect that the main reason that our disagreements have, over many years, been so intractable is that we are not offering different answers to the same questions but are, rather, addressing different questions. Fundamentally, I think, we disagree about how to understand the tasks of epistemology and how to characterize the problems it ought to be addressing. My work has aimed, literally, at changing the subject, by thinking about what problems concerning knowledge and belief are especially pressing now, hence what questions we should be asking, and arguing that those questions are importantly different from those — concerning the nature of knowledge as pursued by generic individuals — that are at the heart of analytic epistemology as currently practiced, however much those who pursue it may disagree about how to answer those questions. Continue Reading…

Author Information: Louise Antony, University of Massachusetts Amherst,

Antony, Louise. 2013. Epistemology or Politics? Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 2 (4) 16-23.

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Please refer to: Scheman, Naomi. 2012. “Toward a Sustainable Epistemology.” Social Epistemology 26 (3-4): 471-489.

Naomi Scheman calls attention to a number of cases in which science, as it is currently institutionalized in wealthy capitalist societies, neglects human needs or thwarts human values, specifically by neglecting the perspectives of marginalized people, or by disparaging the knowledge they possess. I share Scheman’s indignation about these cases, and about many other outrages perpetrated by the elite classes of the industrialized, capitalist West against subordinated people within and outside the societies they dominate. But I am not convinced by her analysis of the problem. Where Scheman sees a cognitive problem, I see a political one. Continue Reading…