Epistemology, Communities and Experts: A Response to Goodwin Liu

Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning 3 (1):5-12 (1996)
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This paper responds to Goodwin Liu's argument in Volume II of this Journal that a pedagogy must be supported by an appropriate theory of knowledge, and that the epistemology which best supports the service-learning pedagogy is anti-foundational pragmatism. The author shows that Liu's characterization of the pragmatist model of knowledge does not avoid the dualism which he sees as a fault of the traditional epistemology. After suggesting a remedy to this, the author then extends Liu's argument by indicating the limits to what the appropriately modified epistemological support will sanction. These limits are shown to be more restrictive than Liu suggests. The result is an improved philosophical justification of the service-learning pedagogy and some suggestions for evaluating proposed curriculum.



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Kenneth A. Richman
Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

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