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Friday, 27 July 2012

Sellarsians and the correlate

I was fortunate earlier this month to spend four days in Bonn during the first week of Markus Gabriel´s summer school on the speculative turn. It is interesting to see where the movement is going. For example, to see how Meillassoux´s book is being (deservedly) taken as the starting point of the whole thing, at least in terms of introducing a suitable vocabulary to organise discussions concerning the 20th century with hindsight. I think the distinctions between weak correlationism, strong correlationism and metaphysics of the subjectivity open up new ways to distinguish the absolute from the relational and the relative.

I was particularly pleased to see Sellars, Brandom and McDowell being discussed. I always thought that these people had grand projects that had a strong speculative flavour to their advantage. McDowell, as I read him, fares as a good and sophisticated version of metaphysics of the subjectivity as the world is re-enchanted and access to it is through fully conceptualised deliverances of the senses. Brandom would be more of a strong correlationist, especially because his inferentialism would not hook beyond our norms - us. Sellars is a more interesting case, he was certainly uneasy to dismiss truth-makers and a defender of a correspondence account of truth as he wanted to embrace a robust realism. It is reasonable to take Sellars as wanting to break out of the correlationist circle and attain some sort of absolute. I´m not so convinced, however, that the thoroughly kantian framework was his best guide.

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