True to Life Why Truth Matters

ISBN-10: 0262622017
ISBN-13: 9780262622011
Edition: 2005
Authors: Michael P. Lynch
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Description: Why does truth matter, when politicians so easily sidestep it and intellectuals scorn it as irrelevant? Why be concerned over an abstract idea like truth when something that isn't true -- for example, a report of Iraq's attempting to buy materials  More...

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Book details

List price: $19.95
Copyright year: 2005
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 8/5/2005
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 224
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.902
Language: English

Why does truth matter, when politicians so easily sidestep it and intellectuals scorn it as irrelevant? Why be concerned over an abstract idea like truth when something that isn't true -- for example, a report of Iraq's attempting to buy materials for nuclear weapons -- gets the desired result -- the invasion of Iraq? In this engaging and spirited book, Michael Lynch argues that truth does matter, in both our personal and political lives. Lynch explains that the growing cynicism over truth stems in large part from our confusion over what truth is. "We need to think our way past our confusion and shed our cynicism about the value of truth," he writes. "Otherwise, we will be unable to act with integrity, to live authentically, and to speak truth to power.""True to Life defends four simple claims: that truth is objective; that it is good to believe what is true; that truth is a goal worthy of inquiry; and that truth can be worth caring about for its own sake -- not just because it gets us other things we want. In defense of these "truisms about truth," Lynch diagnoses the sources of our cynicism and argues that many contemporary theories of truth cannot adequately account for its value. He explains why we should care about truth, arguing that truth and its pursuit are part of living a happy life, important in our personal relationships and for our political values.

Gina Neff is Associate Professor of Communication and Sociology at the University of Washington and the School of Public Policy at Central European University. She is the coeditor of the book Surviving the New Economy.Michael P. Lynch is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Connecticut and the author of Truth in Context: An Essay on Pluralism and Objectivity and True to Life: Why Truth Matters, both published by the MIT Press.

Preface
Introduction
Cynical Myths
Truisms about Truth
Is the Truth Unattainable?
Is Truth Relative?
The Truth Hurts
False Theories
Truth as a Means to an End
Truth and the Scientific Image
Truth as Fiction
Why Truth Matters
Truth and Happiness
Sweet Lies
Truth and Liberal Democracy
Epilogue
Notes
Index

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