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Aug 9, 2020

Donald and Rudy are joined by Djamil Lakhdar to discuss Ian Hacking's book The Social Construction of What?. Written during the "science wars", Hacking intervenes in the debate between strict constructivism and strict realism. Hacking reframes the types of questions to be asked when interrogating the social origin of something, and clarifies the different approaches we can take when we interrogate the construction of a concept. We start off with natural and social sciences, and continue to the application of these questions to today's world. Is physics socially constructed? What does it mean to say gender, race or even capitalism are socially constructed? Where can we go from that assertion? What does it mean to say Marxism has Eurocentric origins and how does that matter today? Does Marxism have a single method, and how do different tendencies relate to that method? We try to answer these and more questions on this episode of Cosmopod.