John van Breda: "Exploring Non-Reductionism and Levels of Reality: On the Importance of the Non-Separability of Discontinuity and Continuity of the Different Levels of Reality"
It is argued in this paper that the discussion on the irreducibility of 'levels of reality' is by no means of theoretical interest only. We are living in a world of planetary crisis brought about by human domination of both nature and society. The unavoidable ethical implications brought about by this situation of having to face and redress the consequences of our actions imply that we have to finally and decisively break with the erroneous Modernist belief in separating ourselves from the world. Our challenge is to think of what links or connects the different levels of reality in a way that will not resort back to any notion of the collapsibility one level into another--thereby (re)inviting reductionism through the backdoor as it were.
2008 July 14
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