Delivered at Conway Hall 5 November 1974. Chaired by Professor Steven Lukes and presented by Professor Ernest Gellner.
An attack on epistemological relativism. Firstly, this relativism involves logical contradictions: it is actually absolutist in being unequivocally what it is, and not some other position. Secondly, the fact that there are many conflicting truth-claims does not mean-as relativists argue-that none can be absolutely correct or incorrect. The history of scientific progress is that of selection from a range of truth-claims, a selection based on uniformity in method of verification, and on independence from intuitions possessing social, cultural and political power. Extra –social ways of validating truth-claims are the distinctive feature of science: of epistemological absolutism.