Making (Up) the Truth: Constructivist Contributions

Journal Article

There is, it appears, the appearance of truth, 'verisimilitude,' and, over and against that, the reality of truth, truth itself. Or so it appears, but perhaps it is not true, or not any longer. Certainly, the certification of true truth and genuine knowledge in their classic senses—as, for example, the accurate affirmation or faithful representation of an altogether autonomous reality—has proved elusive. And, as we know, alternative conceptions of truth and knowledge—as, for example, the relatively coherent, relatively viable, and relatively stable products of various social and institutional practices—have been proposed in recent years ... and have proved relatively coherent, viable, and stable. These alternative conceptions have emerged from a number of fields: philosophy, of course, especially along lines marked by Nietzsche and Wittgenstein, but also other fields, such as biology and psychology, which have yielded important redescriptions of the interactive mechanisms of language, perception, and cognition, and, of particular interest here, the history and sociology of science, which, during the past two decades, have developed a pragmatist/rhetoricist approach to these questions often referred to as 'constructivism.'

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Smith, BH

Published Date

  • May 1, 1992

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 61 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 422 - 429

Published By

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1712-5278

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0042-0247

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.3138/utq.61.4.422


  • en