Social Constructivism and Beyond. On the Double Bind Between Politics and Science

Ethics, Policy and Environment 21 (1):81-95 (2017)
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Abstract

Moving beyond the post-political framing of the climate change debate, scholars have tried to show that scientific practice is based on politically significant forms of social construction. While sympathizing with this attempt, this paper questions their use of the term ‘political’. Drawing on post-foundational political theory and focusing on the example of climate denialism, it argues that the relation between science and the political constitutes a double bind: while upholding an original distinction between science and the political is untenable, representing science in political terms is impossible, because of the specific way the scientific field is symbolically instituted.

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