Volume 12, 2018
Leonardo Caffo, Sarah De Sanctis
Ethical New Realism
For the past thirty years postmodernism has been the major philosophical trend. Starting as a potentially emancipatory tool, though, it has virtually resolved into an acceptance of any kind of (epistemological, ethical) position, in the name of a very politically correct relativism. The aim of this essay is to provide an overview of New Realism (Ferraris 2012) in its opposition and reaction to Postmodernism, showing that it does not imply a return to a ‘traditional’ or ‘strong’ realism but that, on the contrary, it involves a kind of ‘weak realism’: a blend between realism and constructivism. An analysis of the implications of both philosophical approaches in diverse fields will be offered, from epistemology, to politics, to ethics. Where postmodern epistemological claims will be proved to be quite easily confutable, its ethical implications will be faced more carefully. Ethical new realism will, therefore, be presented as particularly challenging (Caffo, De Sanctis 2012), but also promising and important to the future of philosophy.