I want to propose to you a theory about the nature of objectivity—a theory which will tell us something about its causes, its intrinsic character, and its sources of variation. The theory in question is very simple. Indeed, it is so simple that I fear you will reject it out of hand. Here is the theory: it is thatobjectivity is social. What I mean by saying that objectivity is social is that theimpersonalandstablecharacter that attaches to some of our beliefs, and the sense of reality that attaches to their reference, derives from these beliefs beingsocial institutions.