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NEUTRALITY IN THE SOCIAL SCIENCES

On Bhaskar’s argument for an essentialemancipatory impulse in social science

Hugh Lacey

Let a belief P, which has some object O, have a source (causal explanation) S. I am going to contend that if we possess: (i) adequate grounds for supposing P to be false; and (ii) adequate grounds for supposing that S co-explains P, then we may, and must, pass immediately to (iii) a negative evaluation of S (CP [i.e., ceteris paribus]); and (iv) a positive evaluation of action rationally directed at the removal of S (CP).

(Bhaskar, 1986, p. 177)

If one is in the possession of a theory that explains why false consciousness is necessary, then one can pass immediately, without the addition of any extraneous value judgment, ...

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