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The Case For Strategic Realism: A Response To Lawson

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  • Sandra Harding

Abstract

Tony Lawson makes a compelling case that it is only naive realism that feminist social scientists and philosophers need to avoid, not any and all realist arguments. However, he leaves mysterious, on the one hand, why so many feminists have preferred epistemological to ontological arguments and, on the other hand, why naive realism, which is indeed problematic, can appear to be a good scientific/epistemic strategy. The essay below tries to demystify these phenomena, notes a possible misleading aspect of his use of the term "epistemological relativism", and argues for a somewhat more limited value of the ontological argument he proposes for standpoint epistemologies.

Suggested Citation

  • Sandra Harding, 1999. "The Case For Strategic Realism: A Response To Lawson," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(3), pages 127-133.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:femeco:v:5:y:1999:i:3:p:127-133
    DOI: 10.1080/135457099337842
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    Cited by:

    1. Wendy Olsen, 2006. "Pluralism, poverty and sharecropping: Cultivating open-mindedness in development studies," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(7), pages 1130-1157.

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