Who Knows: From Quine to a Feminist Empiricism


Hankinson Nelson, Lynn. Who Knows: From Quine to a Feminist Empiricism. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1990.

In the past fifteen years, feminist science critics have, for the most part, rejected empiricism because of its identification with positivism. Various assumptions of both empiricists and feminists, including the "tenet" that individualism is an essential element of empiricism, have led to the belief that feminist science criticism is not a part of science. This view continues the myth that science is an autonomous and apolitical activity. Building on the work of W.V.0. Quine, Lynn Nelson clears away these obstacles and establishes a framework for a much-needed dialogue between feminist science critics and other scientists and scholars about the nature of science. She makes a case for a feminist empiricism that retains a crucial role for experience, but separates empiricism from individualism.

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