The commons is a concept increasingly used with the promise of creating new collective wealth. In the aftermath of the economic and financial crises, finance and money have been criticized and redesigned to serve the collective interest. In this article, we analyze three types of complementary currency systems: community currencies, inter-enterprise currencies, and cryptocurrencies. We investigate whether these systems can be considered as commons. To address this question, we use two main theoretical frameworks that are usually separate: the “new commons” (...) in organization studies and the “common good” in business ethics. Our findings show that these monetary systems and organizations may be considered as commons under the “common good” framework since they promote the common interest by creating new communities. Nevertheless, according to the “new commons” framework, only systems relying on collective action and self-management can be said to form commons. This allows us to suggest two new categories of commons: the “social commons,” which fit into both the “new commons” and the “common good” frameworks, and the “commercial commons,” which fit the “common good” but not the “new commons” framework. This research advances a new conceptualization of the commons and of the ethical implications of CCs. (shrink)
Alternative currencies are means of payment that circulate alongside—as an alternative or complement to—official currencies. While these currencies have existed for a long time, both society and academia have shown a renewed interest in their potential to decentralize the governance of monetary affairs and to bring people and organizations together in more ethical or sustainable ways. This article is a review of the ethical and philosophical implications of these alternative monetary projects. We first discuss various classifications of these currencies before (...) analyzing the ethical challenges linked to the way they tackle social and environmental issues. We also examine the incentive-based and coercive mechanisms used by these currencies from an ethical perspective and debate the promises and perils of monetary decentralization and democracy. We conclude by identifying an agenda for future research. (shrink)
We introduce the papers in this special issue by providing an overarching perspective on the variety in kinds of commons and the ethical issues stemming from their diversity. Despite a long history of local commons management, recent decades have witnessed a surge of scholarly interest in the concept of “the commons,” including a growing management literature. This swell was impelled especially by Garrett Hardin’s paper of 1968, and the body of work generated by Elinor Ostrom and her colleagues. However, the (...) term itself has come to be used in a variety of ways. To contextualize its ethical dimensions, we map a number of commons-related concepts such as common-pool resources, common property regime, excludability and subtractability, common-pool resource types and commons or “commoning” as a source of production. Following a brief summary of papers in this special issue, the essay concludes with an identification of implications for research, practice and policy. (shrink)
A leading authority in contemporary and digital photography places images of the transitions of American cities in the 1980s and 1990s beside Sartre's meditative essays based on an extended visit to America in 1945, in a volume originally published as part of The Aftermath of War.
Ulrich Meyer defends a novel theory about the nature of time, and argues against the consensus view that time and space are fundamentally alike. He presents the first comprehensive defense of a 'modal' account, which emphasizes the similarities between times and possible worlds in modal logic, and is easily reconciled with the theory of relativity.
Meyers examines the question of personal autonomy. She observes the effects of childrearing practices and sexual biases, and reflects upon the results in women. Annotation copyrighted by Book News, Inc., Portland, OR.
I was surprised to note the critical tone of the discussion which my friend Leonard B. Meyer recently devoted in these pages to an article on the relation of art and science that I wrote for a popular scientific magazine. For I had believed all the while that in my article I was merely presenting to a general scientific audience a watered-down version of what I thought were Meyer's own views. Evidently I was mistaken in that belief, though (...) I have been unable to fathom just where I went wrong in interpreting Meyer's earlier writings, which, more than any other source, are the provenance of my ideas about the nature of art. Gunther S. Stent, professor of molecular biology at the University of California, Berkeley, is the author of Molecular Biology of Bacterial Viruses, Phage and the Origin of Molecular Biology, Molecular Genetics: An Introductory Narrative, The Coming of the Golden Age: A View of the End of Progress, and many important scientific papers. In Concerning the Sciences, the Arts—AND the Humanities" , Leonard B. Meyer took issue with views expressed by Professor Stent in "Prematurity and Uniqueness in Scientific Discovery," published in Scientific American. (shrink)
The philosophical method is critical to ethics consulting. To be truly effective, ethicists need grounding in ethics theory, abstract reasoning and conceptual analysis. A Practical Guide to Clinical Ethics Consulting allows ethicists to understand problems from practitioners' points-of-view, and allows for a genuine appreciation of the working life of practitioners.
It is often claimed that there is an explanatory divide between an expressivist account of normative discourse and a realist conception of normativity: more precisely, that expressivism and realism offer conflicting explanations of (i) the metaphysical structure of the normative realm, (ii) the connection between normative judgment and motivation, (iii) our normative beliefs and any convergence thereof, or (iv) the content of normative thoughts and claims. In this paper I argue that there need be no such explanatory conflict. Given a (...) minimalist approach to the relevant metaphysical and semantic notions, expressivism is compatible with any explanation that would be acceptable as a general criterion for realism. (shrink)
The past 10 years have seen considerable developments in the use of narrative in medicine, primarily through the emergence of the so-called narrative medicine. In this article, I question narrative medicine’s self-understanding and contend that one of the most prominent issues is its lack of a clear epistemological framework. Drawing from Gadamer’s work on hermeneutics, I first show that narrative medicine is deeply linked with the hermeneutical field of knowledge. Then I try to identify which claims can be legitimately expected (...) from narrative medicine, and which ones cannot be. I scrutinize in particular whether narrative medicine can legitimately grasp the patient’s lived experience of his or her illness. In the last section of this article, I begin to explore the potential usefulness of this epistemological clarification. This analysis allows for a further understanding of what is really at stake with narrative medicine, and thus to identify when it may be convenient, and when it may not. Furthermore, this clarification opens up promising new possibilities of dialogue with critics of the field. I conclude that narrative medicine finds its proper place as a possible tool available to mediate dialogue, which is at the heart of the clinical encounter in medical practice. (shrink)
Michel Meyer offers a new beginning for philosophy rooted in a theory of questioning that he calls "problematology." Meyer argues that a new beginning is necessary in order to resituate philosophy, science, and linguistic analysis, and he proposes a global view of rationality by returning to the nature of questioning itself. For Meyer, philosophy does not solve problems or give answers but instead shows how propositions are related to a whole field of questions that give them meaning. (...) Reason is identified not with answers but with the question-answer process. Meyer pursues this new theory of reason and meaning in a critique of Western philosophy from Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle through Heidegger, Wittgenstein, and Foucault. He provides a detailed analysis of Descartes' notion of radical doubt and demonstrates its implications for the subsequent philosophical tradition that ignored the questioning process while pursuing an unshakable foundation for knowledge. Meyer argues that recent work in rhetoric points toward a theory of radical questioning and claims that the methods of rhetoric and argumentation must be turned back on philosophy itself in order to recover the original significance of metaphysics as the science of ultimate questions. (shrink)
We all could have had better lives, yet often do not wish that our lives had gone differently, especially when we contemplate alternatives that vastly diverge from our actual life course. What, if anything, accounts for such conservative retrospective attitudes? I argue that the right answer involves the significance of our personal attachments and our biographical identity. I also examine other options, such as the absence of self-to-self connections across possible worlds and a general conservatism about value.
How can we distinguish between quasi-realist expressivism and normative realism? The most promising answer to this question is the “explanation” explanation proposed by Dreier (2004), Simpson (2018), and others: the two views might agree in their claims about truth and objectivity, or even in their attributions of semantic content to normative sentences, but they disagree about how to explain normative meaning. Realists explain meaning by invoking normative facts and properties, or representational relations between normative language and the world, the thought (...) goes, while expressivists appeal instead to desire-like mental states in their explanations of meaning. However, I argue that, if we adopt a deflationary approach to representation and other related notions, there need be no such explanatory divide between expressivism and anything recognizable as a plausible notion of normative realism. Any alleged explanatory criterion for realism will either be incompatible with deflationism, or it will fail to capture some standard versions of normative realism. I conclude that, in a deflationary framework, expressivism is compatible with genuine realism. (shrink)
Suppose that there are objective normative facts and our beliefs about such facts are by-and-large true. How did this come to happen? This is the reliability challenge to normative realism. As has been recently noted, the challenge also applies to expressivist “quasi-realism”. I argue that expressivism is useful in the face of this challenge, in a way that has not been yet properly articulated. In dealing with epistemological issues, quasi-realists typically invoke the desire-like nature of normative judgments. However, this is (...) not enough to prevent the reliability challenge from arising, given that quasi-realists also hold that normative judgments are truth-apt beliefs. To defuse this challenge, we need to isolate a deeper sense in which normative thought is not representational. I propose that we rely on the negative functional thesis of expressivism: normative thought does not have the function of tracking normative facts, or any other kind of facts. This thesis supports an argument to the effect that it is misguided to expect an explanation of our access to normative facts akin to the explanations available in regions of thought that have a tracking function. We should be content with explanations of our reliability that take for granted certain connections between our psychology and the normative truths. (shrink)
Over the last decade, personalized medicine has become a buzz word, which covers a broad spectrum of meanings and generates many different opinions. The purpose of this article is to achieve a better understanding of the reasons why personalized medicine gives rise to such conflicting opinions. We show that a major issue of personalized medicine is the gap existing between its claims and its reality. We then present and analyze different possible reasons for this gap. We propose an hypothesis inspired (...) by the Windelband’s distinction between nomothetic and idiographic methodology. We argue that the fuzzy situation of personalized medicine results from a mix between idiographic claims and nomothetic methodological procedures. Hence we suggest that the current quandary about personalized medicine cannot be solved without getting involved in a discussion about the complex epistemological and methodological status of medicine. To conclude, we show that the Gadamer’s view of medicine as a dialogical process can be fruitfully used and reveals that personalization is not a theoretical task, but a practical one, which takes place within the clinical encounter. (shrink)
It has been argued that there is something morally objectionable about moral realism: for instance, according to realism, we are justified in believing that genocide is wrong only if a certain moral fact obtains, but it is objectionable to hold our moral commitments hostage to metaphysics in this way. In this paper, I argue that no version of this moral argument against realism is likely to succeed. More precisely, minimal realism―the kind of realism on which realist theses are understood as (...) internal to moral discourse―is immune to this challenge, contrary to what some proponents of the moral argument have suggested, while robust non-naturalist realists might have good answers to all versions of the argument as well, at least if they adopt a certain stance on how to form metaphysical beliefs in the moral domain. (shrink)
Building on their important findings in The Source of the River, the authors now probe even more deeply into minority underachievement at the college level. Taming the River examines the academic and social dynamics of different ethnic groups during the first two years of college. Focusing on racial differences in academic performance, the book identifies the causes of students' divergent grades and levels of personal satisfaction with their institutions. Using survey data collected from twenty-eight selective colleges and universities, Taming the (...) River considers all facets of student life, including who students date, what fields they major in, which sports they play, and how they perceive their own social and economic backgrounds. The book explores how black and Latino students experience pressures stemming from campus racial climate and "stereotype threat"--when students underperform because of anxieties tied to existing negative stereotypes. Describing the relationship between grade performance and stereotype threat, the book shows how this link is reinforced by institutional practices of affirmative action. The authors also indicate that when certain variables are controlled, minority students earn the same grades, express the same college satisfaction, and remain in school at the same rates as white students. A powerful look at how educational policies unfold in America's universities, Taming the River sheds light on the social and racial factors influencing student success. (shrink)
Contemporary or postmodern thought is based on the lack of foundation. The impossibility of having a principle for philosophy has become a position of principle. As a result, rhetoric has taken over. Content has given way to the priority of form. Michel Meyer's book aims at showing that philosophy as foundational is possible and necessary, and that rhetoric can flourish alongside, but the conception of reason must be changed. Questioning rather than answering must be considered as the guiding principle. (...) What the author calls "problematology" is not only the study of questioning but also the analysis of the reasons why it has been repressed throughout the history of philosophy. Since Socrates, philosophers and scientists have reasoned by asking questions and by trying to solve them. Questioning has been the unthematized foundation of philosophy and thought at large. Philosophers, however, have preferred another norm, granting privilege to the answers and thereby repressing the questions into the realm of the preliminary and unessential. They have not considered their discursive practice as being based upon some question-answer complex, but exclusively on the results they call propositions. Meyer argues that propositions ensue from corresponding questions, and not the other way around. Anthropology, ontology, reasoning, and language thus receive a new interpretation in the problematological conception of philosophy, a conception in which questions and problems are thematized afresh. The theory of language in everyday use, in argumentation, or in literary analysis receives a full and decisive treatment here, making Meyer's question-view one of the leading theories in contemporary thought, alongside his rhetoric for which he is already well known. (shrink)
Dancers and dance philosophers report on experiences of a certain form of sense making and bodily thinking through the dancing body. Yet, discussions on expertise and consciousness are often framed within canonical philosophical world-views that make it difficult to fully recognize, verbalize, and value the full variety of embodied and affective facets of subjectivity. Using qualitative interviews with five professional dancers and choreographers, I make an attempt to disclose the characteristics of what I consider to be a largely overseen state (...) of consciousness: embodied reflection. Dancers are familiar with this attentive bodily presence, which constitutes their work mode and heightens their abilities as experts. Detailed descriptions of their daily work at the theatre help us grasp the qualities and understand the enigmas of the absorbed state of bodily thinking. Husserl’s theories on reflection and Merleau-Ponty’s work on motoricity support our understanding of the structures behind embodied reflection. I believe it is a common human resource, and that whether we are experts or not, we all have the ability to reflect non-conceptually through bodily and/or affective activity. (shrink)
For the passions represent a force of excess and lawlessness in humanity that produces troubling, confusing paradoxes.In this book, noted European philosopher Michel Meyer offers a wide-ranging exegesis, the first of its kind, that ...
Across two studies, one of which was pre-registered, we find that a simple questionnaire that measures intellectual virtue and vice predicts how many fake news articles and conspiracy theories participants accept. This effect holds even when controlling for multiple demographic predictors, including age, household income, sex, education, ethnicity, political affiliation, religion, and news consumption. These results indicate that self-report is an adequate way to measure intellectual virtue and vice, which suggests that they are not fully immune to introspective awareness or (...) “stealthy” in the sense that Cassam (2015) argues. This is an important methodological result and may pave the way for future research on intellectual virtue and vice. (shrink)
La question de la religion - de son essence, de sa fonction, de son origine - a été centrale dans la sociologie et l'anthropologie classiques. Pour la tirer des impasses et de la stagnation où elle est reléguée de nos jours, Camille Tarot propose ici un bilan critique des œuvres des meilleurs comparatistes, à travers leurs théories si contradictoires de la religion. Huit auteurs principaux sont soumis à examen : Emile Durkheim, Marcel Mauss, Mircéa Eliade, Georges Dumézil, Claude Lévi-Strauss, (...) René Girard, Pierre Bourdieu et Marcel Gauchet. L'important en la matière est d'abord d'esquiver les faux irénismes comme les querelles stériles ou haineuses, pour confronter les doctrines en profondeur et systématiquement. Ensuite, de déceler l'impensé et les refoulements que produit chaque cadre théorique, pour proposer le modèle ou l'idéal-type de la religion qui paraît le mieux fondé. Au fil de cet examen, il apparaît que l'essence du fait religieux est à rechercher à l'intersection du symbolique et du sacré, à comprendre à partir des fondations d'Emile Durkheim et de Marcel Mauss, complétées par les apports de René Girard. La possible fécondité du modèle qui se dégage ainsi s'atteste par sa capacité à relire les sources et à renouveler en profondeur les vieux problèmes des fonctions de la religion, qui n'avaient guère avancé depuis Emile Durkheim. (shrink)
Toutes les cultures ont accordé à la musique un pouvoir surnaturel. Elle fascine le philosophe qui a pu y voir le langage même de l'Idée. Dans l'opéra, elle exalte les grandes figures littéraires auxquelles elle confère la force des mythes. Mais elle est aussi un instrument de fascination des peuples, comme en témoignent son utilisation sous les divers fascismes ou la toute puissance de l'actuel fétichisme musical. Les textes de ce recueil envisagent quatre aspects majeurs de cette fascination musicale. Celle (...) du philosophe qui, de Platon à Nietzsche ou Husserl, parait à la fois enchanté et médusé par le charme de la musique. Celle du poète qui rêve de porter le langage à la limite du dicible, mais redoute, comme Mallarmé, de le voir s'évanouir en musique pure. Celle de l'écrivain qui, tel Hoffmann, Stendhal ou Butor, rivalise parfois avec le compositeur dans l'invention d'une écriture musicale. Celle, enfin, qui nous saisit lorsque l'art lyrique donne à la voix une puissance de séduction démoniaque, où la jouissance esthétique, l'érotisme et la mort se confondent en une expérience sublime. La question de la fascination musicale conduit à s'interroger sur l'essence même de la littérature comme sur les limites de la pensée rationnelle, dans une approche qui unit intimement la poétique et l'éthique, l'esthétique et le politique. (shrink)
Routley-Meyer Ternary Relational Semantics for Intuitionistic-type Negations examines how to introduce intuitionistic-type negations into RM-semantics. RM-semantics is highly malleable and capable of modeling families of logics which are very different from each other. This semantics was introduced in the early 1970s, and was devised for interpreting relevance logics. In RM-semantics, negation is interpreted by means of the Routley operator, which has been almost exclusively used for modeling De Morgan negations. This book provides research on particular features of intuitionistic-type of (...) negations in RM-semantics, while also defining the basic systems and many of their extensions by using models with or without a set of designated points. (shrink)
Many people living in highly industrialised countries and elsewhere emit greenhouse gases at a certain high level as a by-product of their activities, and they expect to be able to continue to emit at that level. This level is far above the just per capita level. We investigate whether that expectation is legitimate and permissible. We argue that the expectation is epistemically legitimate. Given certain assumptions, we can also think of it as politically legitimate. Also, the expectation is shown to (...) be morally permissible but with major qualifications. The interpretation of the significance of the expectation is compatible with the understanding that historical emissions should count in terms of fairly distributing the benefits of emission-generating activities over people’s lifetimes but constrains the way in which we may collectively respond to climate change. (shrink)
The inclusion of engineering standards in US science education standards is potentially important because of how limited engineering education for K-12 learners is, despite the ubiquity of engineering in students’ lives. However, the majority of learners experience science education throughout their compulsory schooling. If improved engineering literacy is to be achieved, then its inclusion in science curricula is perhaps the most efficient means. One significant challenge that arises, however, is in the framing of engineering relative to science by both teachers (...) and curriculum. Science and engineering are both distinct and interdependent. The nature of the contributions of science and engineering to one another has been an area of some examination in philosophy of technology and engineering, but little framing of this relationship has been conducted with K-12 science and engineering education contexts in mind. Nature of science is a critical layer of scientific understanding that has been used to explicitly support literacy in K-16 science classrooms for decades. However, engineering cannot be authentically and appropriately supported by NOS framing. There is an immediate need for discourse on the nature of engineering knowledge but not in isolation of NOS. Given the increasing inclusion of engineering in science classrooms, relationships between NOS and NOEK are in need of explication and argument. Our purpose is to promote a discussion about NOS, engineering, and the relationship between them without misrepresenting engineering as a subdomain of science or as an oversimplification of itself. (shrink)
How can we rationally make peace with our past moral failings, while committing to avoid similar mistakes in the future? Is it because we cannot do anything about the past, while the future is still open? Or is it that regret for our past mistakes is psychologically harmful, and we need to forgive ourselves in order to be able to move on? Or is it because moral mistakes enable our moral growth? I argue that these and other answers do not (...) properly resolve the problem of temporal asymmetry in our attitudes toward moral imperfection, and I defend an alternative response, centered on our personal attachments and our biographical identity. (shrink)
The following scenario seems possible: a community uses concepts that play the same role in guiding actions and shaping social life as our normative concepts, and yet refer to something else. As Eklund (2017) argues, this apparent possibility poses a problem for any normative realist who aspires to vindicate the thought that reality itself favors our ways of valuing and acting. A promising approach to this challenge is to try to rule out the possibility of alternative normative concepts, by arguing (...) that any concepts that have the same normative role must share a reference as well. (Eklund calls this "referential normativity".) In this paper I argue that normative quasi-naturalism, a view that combines expressivism about normative discourse with a naturalist metaphysics of normativity, supports referential normativity and solves the problem of alternative normative concepts. (shrink)
Climate change can be interpreted as a unique case of historical injustice involving issues of both intergenerational and global justice. We split the issue into two separate questions. First, how should emission rights be distributed? Second, who should come up for the costs of coping with climate change? We regard the first question as being an issue of pure distributive justice and argue on prioritarian grounds that the developing world should receive higher per capita emission rights than the developed world. (...) This is justified by the fact that the latter already owns a larger share of benefits associated with emission generating activities because of its past record of industrialisation. The second question appears to be an issue of compensatory justice. After defining what we mean by compensation, we show that different kinds of compensatory principles run into problems when used to justify payments by historical emitters of the North to people suffering from climate change in the South. As an alternative, we propose to view payments from wealthy countries for adaptation to climate change in vulnerable countries rather as a measure based on concerns of global distributive justice. (shrink)
Camille Desmoulins's Le Vieux Cordelier is one of the best known newspapers of the French Revolution. Yet, despite this, there has long been uncertainty over the intellectual content of the newspaper and, in particular, over Desmoulins's use of Tacitean passages to support his views. This article seeks to shed light on this important newspaper by setting it not just in the context of the debates of the winter of 1793–1794, but also in that of the ideas and arguments of (...) the Cordelier Club. The article demonstrates that in drawing on English republican ideas in Le Vieux Cordelier, to assert classical democratic republicanism against the views upheld by the Hébertists and the Revolutionary Government, Desmoulins was writing firmly in the tradition of the Cordelier Club. ☆ This article is based on papers given at the BSECS Conference in January 2001 and at the History ‘Work in Progress’ seminar at Sussex University in February 2001. I am grateful to all who commented on the paper and also to those who have read subsequent drafts, particularly Blair Worden, Richard Whatmore, Brian Young, and Maurice Hutt. (shrink)
This paper addresses three commentaries on Victims' Stories and the Advancement of Human Rights. In response to Vittorio Bufacchi, it argues that asking victims to tell their stories needn't be coercive or unjust and that victims are entitled to decide whether and under what conditions to tell their stories. In response to Serene Khader, it argues that empathy with victims' stories can contribute to building a culture of human rights provided that measures are taken to overcome the implicit biases and (...) colonialist interpellations she identifies. In response to Andrea Westlund, it proposes a taxonomy of types of narrative closure and offers some arguments to strengthen her view that empathy with victims' stories endows audience members with a new reason and new motivation to support human rights. (shrink)
Adolf Meyer-Abich spent his career as one of the most vigorous and varied advocates in the biological sciences. Primarily a philosophical proponent of holistic thought in biology, he also sought through collaboration with empirically oriented colleagues in biology, medicine, and even physics to develop arguments against mechanistic and reductionistic positions in the life sciences, and to integrate them into a newly disciplinary theoretical biology. He participated in major publishing efforts including the founding of Acta Biotheoretica. He also sought international (...) contacts and worked for long stretches in Chile, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, and the United States. His career straddled the Nazi period, which led him into a complex dance of support for and resistance to the regime. Despite the relative failure of his conceptual innovations to catch on, his ideas and writings sit squarely within the trajectory of thought and argument that has led to today’s reinvigoration of thought about conceptual integration in evolutionary developmental biology. (shrink)
A revival of the dialogue between phenomenology and psychiatry currently takes place in the best international journals of psychiatry. In this article, we analyse this revival and the role given to phenomenology in this context. Although this dialogue seems at first sight interesting, we show that it is problematic. It leads indeed to use phenomenology in a special way, transforming it into a discipline dealing with empirical facts, so that what is called “phenomenology” has finally nothing to do with phenomenology. (...) This so-called phenomenology tallies however with what we have always called semiology. We try to explain the reasons why phenomenology is misused in that way. In our view, this transformation of phenomenology into an empirical and objectifying discipline is explained by the role attributed to phenomenology by contemporary authors, which is to solve the problems raised by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. (shrink)
L'intérêt des sciences humaines pour les rapports entre TIC, langues et savoirs n'est pas nouveau. Cependant l'intelligibilité d'une construction épistémologique des relations reste un domaine en friche dans le contexte de la mondialisation. Le présent article essaie de s'en prendre à ce vide épistémologique en interrogeant particulièrement les enjeux des langues africaines dans le travail de structuration et de dissémination du savoir global et des savoirs locaux. Ces savoirs, chacun à sa manière, tentent de se construire un statut nouveau en (...) s'insérant dans les divers marchés de la connaissance. Pour cela, ils tirent profit du renouvellement des thématiques occidentales vis-à-vis des consommateurs africains d'information scientifique. En conséquence, des politiques de productivité et de circularité des savoirs s'érigent dans des stratégies d'uniformisation épistémologique. Parallèlement, la mode de la «diversité linguistique et culturelle», censée protéger les langues et savoirs locaux, risque de les transformer en de simples objets ethnographiques.The interest of the humanities to the relationship between ICT and language knowledge is not new. However, the intelligibility of a construction epistemological relations remains a fallow field in the context of globalization. This article tries to take this empty epistemological questioning particularly the issues of African languages in the work of structuring and dissemination of global knowledge and local knowledge. This knowledge, in their own way, trying to build a new status by inserting themselves into the various markets for knowledge. For this, they benefit from the renewal of western themed vis-à-vis African consumers of scientific information. As a result, productivity and political knowledge circularity themselves up in uniform epistemological strategies. Meanwhile, the fashion of the "linguistic and cultural diversity," intended to protect indigenous knowledge and languages, may turn them into mere ethnographic objects. (shrink)