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Author Information: Rom Harré, Georgetown University,

Harré, Rom. “A Reply to Kasavin’s ‘Philosophical Realism’.” Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 4, no. 4 (2015): 21-25.

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Ilya Kasavin’s article (2015) explores the extent to which a generic social epistemology is, or can be made to be, compatible with some form of scientific realism. My plan in this review is to lay out what I take to be the main issues that appear when social epistemology is attacked by naïve realists, and to stich this account on to Kasavin’s own analysis. Kasavin’s strategy is to give a comprehensive account of just what ‘sociality’ might be in the context of the debate about how far the sciences as bodies of knowledge are social constructions. There is little I would disagree with in his account. However, there is an omission from his account of realism which comes I think from identifying ‘realism’ with the doctrines of the Harvard philosophers, particularly Quine and Putnam.  Continue Reading…