, Volume 8, Issue 2, pp 157–161 | Cite as

Social epistemology and reflexivity: Two versions of how to be really useful

  • Malcolm Ashmore


This essay argues that the really useful character of reflexivity is that it enables a radical critique of representation and its conventional material and rhetorical practices. It is uniquely able to produce paradox and thus disrupt discourses by undermining authorial privilege. Because Fuller's social epistemology is insensitive to its own reflexive implications, and limits itself to normative questions about knowledge policy, it is too limited — and limiting — to provide a context that can nurture reflexivity.

Key words

Epistemology normativity reflexivity social epistemology sociology of science sociology sociology of knowledge 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Malcolm Ashmore
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Social SciencesLoughborough University of TechnologyLoughboroughUK

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