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Of “Epistemic Covetousness” in Knowledge Economies: The Not‐nothing of Social Constructionism

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This paper seeks to inquire into the constructionist knowledge practices by further exploring the interchange outlined by philosopher Gaston Bachelard between the naive realist's conjuration of reality as a precious good in her possession and the miser's complex of savings the pennies. In fact, this elective affinity holds true not just for naive realism, but also for its very critiques, most of which remaining passionately attached to a little something that is prior to any socio‐historical process. This realistic little something is better understood as a double negation, namely as a not‐nothing, in that it precisely survives the critique of a pre‐existing reality out there as is the case for the discourse of social construction. I will suggest here that this not‐nothing proceeds from knowledge practices that enact “epistemic covetousness” as their critical gesture.

Keywords: Feminist Theory; Gender; Politics of de‚Äźnaturalization; Race; Science studies; Sex

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: October 1, 2005

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