Re: anthropocentric


Whatz the beef? Don't ask me I don't eat the stuff. We have 'mad' (poor term
this, on a Foucault list, still it is the dominant discourse term, even if
it does misdescribe the 'actuality' of the situation) cows, in Britain, as
you have probably heard. Still, if you have to ask about what is wrong with
anthropocentricism, then there is probably little for me to add, but I will
anyway. Society/culture/history etc are all materially located. Change the
latter change the former, at least to some extent. Also, and this is where
it gets really fun, an anthropocentric philosophy is simply one more variant
on the god-centered work outlook.

If the world, reality, the cosmos itself just is as _we_ (leaving aside the
problem of the many we) say it is, then humanity now becomes firmly secured
in its rightful place, as meaning-bestowing, reality creating manifestations
of Geist/God. We didn't discover the moons of Jupiter we made them. Great
isn't it, now the humanist arrogance reappears with a vengance wearing a
linguistic disguise. Which, of course, as anyone who has read the works of
the Logical Positivists (which isn't actually many despite the way the term
gets thrown around) will know, was exactly their chosen strategic move:
replace metaphysical issues with linguistic ones. This is, to reiterate and
repeat, 'A sociological theory of Disneyworld: a synthetic world inhabited
by artificial creatures, including humans, constructed by humans. It
postulates an all powerful interpretation that creates what little reality
it perceives' (Murphy, 1995).

Also, and I know this is a cheap shot, Quetzil, but some things - sex,
drugs, rock and roll, etc., are just irresistible. Any thoughts on the
bombi-ness of feathers yet? :-)

What's wrong with anthropocentricism, you ask? I think I'll give up.


Colin Wight
Department of International Politics
University of Wales, Aberystwyth
SY23 3DA


Partial thread listing: