Browsing by Author "Froneman, Hanika"
Now showing 1 - 1 of 1
Results Per Page
- ItemMindchangeability - Objectivity in the Time of Post-Truth Politics(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2022) Froneman, Hanika; Roodt, Vasti; Smit, JP; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Dept. of Philosophy.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The post-truth lament points to a perceived decline in the objectivity of public opinion. In this thesis, I contribute to the academic discussion of post-truth politics by proposing a conceptual shift from naïve objectivity to critical objectivity. Following the critical rationalism of Karl Popper, I argue that objectivity, as a procedural norm of inquiry, is defined by a receptivity to refutation. Based on this conception, I propose a distinct approach to interpreting and ameliorating the historical problems signified by post-truth politics. Given the fact that these problems persist within the framework of modern democracy, I also address the apparent tension between a demand for objective standards in the formation of public opinion, and the democratic norms of freedom and pluralism. I advocate for a discursive approach to conceptualising the role of objective constraints in public opinion and deliberation that extends to matters of evaluative judgement. This, however, requires a response to the challenge of delineating an ideal of evaluative objective that does not succumb to the problematic assumption that there exist normative facts independent of the construction of moral-political ideals by the subjects of democratic deliberation. I address this challenge, relying on Habermasian discourse ethics to provide a basis for theorising ‘objectivity without objects’. I subsequently reintroduce the arguments for critical objectivity at the level of normative political discourse, and set out the theory of what I call ‘mindchangeability’ – a characterisation of political objectivity by means of the same critical attitude that describes critical objectivity in the context of epistemic inquiry. I explore some of the implications of this approach for addressing the deeper problems of post-truth politics – including not only the problem of misinformation, but also political polarisation.