Reactions to Skepticism
Keywords:skepticism, nihilism, pragmatism, hedonism, Deleuze, Vattimo, values, society, knowledge
In modern continental philosophy, nihilism has taken place as an important train of thought, both as a consequence of Christian European society and as a novel skeptic argument. It calls for the total removal of current society because humanity has now metaphorically taken the place of God and thus should create its own values and structure. The replacement of God can be attributed to skepticism, which refutes the possibility of certain knowledge. This paper compares two opposite reactions to skepticism: nihilism and pragmatic skepticism. It explores the societal and individual implications of the fulfillment of both views, contrasting the potential danger of radical change with that of conformity. The modern trend of perfectionism and how it influences these philosophies is also explored. Inalienable rights are discussed and their legitimacy or implementation is put into question. Hedonistic consequences and their effect on rational thought are also mentioned to analyze the potential shortcomings of any skeptical view. The structure of society, values, and their evolution raises questions about their validity, origins, and use.
References or Bibliography
Deleuze, Gilles. “Power, Classical Natural Right.” Sur Spinoza, 12/09/1980, University Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint Denis
Deleuze, Gilles. “The Overman: Against the Dialectic.” Nietzsche and Philosophy, Columbia University Press, 1983
Vattimo, Gianni. “Nihilism as Emancipation.” Vol. 5 No. 1, Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy, 2009
Rinard, Susanna. “Pragmatic Skepticism.” Rutgers Epistemology Conference 2019, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research
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