Oxford Dictionaries’ 2016 word of the year was “post-truth,” which it defined as an adjective “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Since then, the term “alternative facts” has also entered into popular discourse.
What does this new environment -- in which “my opinion is worth more than your facts” -- mean for scientists, philosophers, and others who seek objective fact? And worse, is philosophy itself perhaps partly to blame?
In this Nature article, philosopher Kathleen Higgins discusses both points and concludes that scientists and philosophers need to speak up and “publicly affirm the intellectual virtues that they so effectively model: critical thinking, sustained inquiry and revision of beliefs on the basis of evidence.” http://www.nature.com/news/post-truth-a-guide-for-the-perplexed-1.21054
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