William Rehg

William Rehg is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Saint Louis University. He is the translator of Jürgen Habermas's Between Facts and Norms: Contributions to a Discourse Theory of Law and Democracy (1996) and the coeditor of Deliberative Democracy: Essays on Reason and Politics and Pluralism (1997) and The Pragmatic Turn: The Transformation of Critical Theory (2001), all published by the MIT Press.

  • Cogent Science in Context

    Cogent Science in Context

    The Science Wars, Argumentation Theory, and Habermas

    William Rehg

    A proposal for an interdisciplinary, context-sensitive framework for assessing the strength of scientific arguments that melds Jürgen Habermas's discourse theory and sociological contextualism.

    Recent years have seen a series of intense, increasingly acrimonious debates over the status and legitimacy of the natural sciences. These “science wars” take place in the public arena—with current battles over evolution and global warming—and in academia, where assumptions about scientific objectivity have been called into question. Given these hostilities, what makes a scientific claim merit our consideration? In Cogent Science in Context, William Rehg examines what makes scientific arguments cogent—that is, strong and convincing—and how we should assess that cogency. Drawing on the tools of argumentation theory, Rehg proposes a multidimensional, context-sensitive framework both for understanding the cogency of scientific arguments and for conducting cooperative interdisciplinary assessments of the cogency of actual scientific arguments. Rehg closely examines Jürgen Habermas's argumentation theory and its implications for understanding cogency, applying it to a case from high-energy physics. A series of problems, however, beset Habermas's approach. In response, Rehg outlines his own “critical contextualist” approach, which uses argumentation-theory categories in a new and more context-sensitive way inspired by ethnography of science.

    • Hardcover $9.75 £7.99
    • Paperback $5.75 £4.99
  • Pluralism and the Pragmatic Turn

    Pluralism and the Pragmatic Turn

    The Transformation of Critical Theory, Essays in Honor of Thomas McCarthy

    William Rehg and James Bohman

    The essays in this volume reflect on and expand Frankfurt School critical theory as reformulated after World War II by Karl-Otto Apel, Jürgen Habermas, and others. Frankfurt School critical theory since the pragmatic turn has become a richer source of critical analysis that is at the same time socially and politically more effective. The essays are dedicated to Thomas McCarthy, who has done perhaps more than any other scholar to introduce English-speaking audiences to contemporary German critical theory. The book is organized into three parts. Part one deals with social theory and the rational basis of communication, including basic issues raised by the pragmatic turn. Part two examines conceptions of autonomy and the self. Part three deals with political theory, focusing on problems stemming from sociocultural pluralism. Together, the essays provide an overview of the latest developments in Frankfurt School critical theory as it responds to the challenges of pragmatism and social pluralism.

    • Hardcover $16.75 £13.99
    • Paperback $7.75 £6.99
  • Deliberative Democracy

    Deliberative Democracy

    Essays on Reason and Politics

    James Bohman and William Rehg

    Ideals of democratic participation and rational self-government have long informed modern political theory. As a recent elaboration of these ideals, the concept of deliberative democracy is based on the principle that legitimate democracy issues from the public deliberation of citizens. This remarkably fruitful concept has spawned investigations along a number of lines. Areas of inquiry include the nature and value of deliberation, the feasibility and desirability of consensus on contentious issues, the implications of institutional complexity and cultural diversity for democratic decision making, and the significance of voting and majority rule in deliberative arrangements.The anthology opens with four key essays—by Jon Elster, Jürgen Habermas, Joshua Cohen, and John Rawls—that helped establish the current inquiry into deliberative models of democracy. The nine essays that follow represent the latest efforts of leading democratic theorists to tackle various problems of deliberative democracy. All the contributions address tensions that arise between reason and politics in a democracy inspired by the ideal of achieving reasoned agreement among free and equal citizens. Although the authors approach the topic of deliberation from different perspectives, they all aim to provide a theoretical basis for a more robust democratic practice.

    Contributors James Bohman, Thomas Christiano, Joshua Cohen, Jon Elster, David Estlund, Gerald F. Gaus, Jürgen Habermas, James Johnson, Jack Knight, Frank I. Michelman, John Rawls, Henry S. Richardson, Iris Marion Young

    • Hardcover $95.00 £70.95
    • Paperback $55.00 £43.00

Contributor

  • The Handbook of Science and Technology Studies, Third Edition

    The Handbook of Science and Technology Studies, Third Edition

    Edward J. Hackett, Olga Amsterdamska, Michael E. Lynch, and Judy Wajcman

    A comprehensive and authoritative overview of current research, major theoretical perspectives, and new research directions in the study of science, technology, and society.

    Science and Technology Studies is a flourishing interdisciplinary field that examines the creation, development, and consequences of science and technology in their cultural, historical, and social contexts. The New Handbook of Science and Technology Studies provides a comprehensive and authoritative overview of the field, reviewing current research and major theoretical and methodological approaches and analyzing emergent issues in a form that is accessible to new and established scholars from a range of disciplines. Handbook chapters review the dominant theoretical perspectives of STS, present the current state of research on a spectrum of topics in the field, analyze changes brought about by the commercialization of science, study interactions between science and other institutions, examine the role of experts and the public in scientific and technological decision making, and consider the cultural and social dimensions of new technologies. The New Handbook of Science and Technology Studies is the third in a series of volumes sponsored by the Society for Social Studies of Science that have defined the field of Science and Technology Studies. It will be an essential resource for scholars in that field as well as for those in such neighboring disciplines as anthropology, history, philosophy, sociology, law, political science, feminist and critical theory, and literary studies.

    Contributors Vincanne Adams, Warwick Anderson, Brian Balmer, Daneil Barben, Pablo Boczkowski, Steve Breyman, Massimiano Bucchi, Regula Burri, Nancy Campbell, Adele E. Clarke, H.M. Collins, Susan E. Cozzens, Jennifer L. Croissant, Park Doing, Joseph Dumit, Steven Epstein, Henry Etzkowitz, Robert Evans, Erik Fisher, Stefan Fuchs, Sonia Gatchair, Ronald N. Giere, Thomas F. Gieryn, Namrata Gupta, David H. Guston, Adam Hedgecoe, Christopher R. Henke, David Hess, Linda Hogle, Alan Irwin, Sheila Jasanoff, Deborah G. Johnson, David Kaiser, William Keith, Carol Kemelgor, Kyung-Sup Kim, Andrew Lakoff, Bruno Latour, Leah A. Lievrouw, Margaret Lock, Brian Martin, Paul Martin, Philip Mirowski, Cyrus Mody, Federico Neresini, Gonzalo Ordóñez, Nelly Oudshoorn, Trevor Pinch, Alex Preda, Brian Rappert, William Rehg, Marina Ranga, Cynthis Selin, Esther-Mirjam Sent, Steven Shapin, Sergio Sismondo, Laurel Smith-Doerr, Miriam Solomon, Susan Leigh Star, John Stone, Lucy Suchman, Anupit Supnithadnaporn, Charles Thorpe, Stephen Turner, The Virtual Knowledge Studio, Jameson M. Wetmore, Sally Wyatt, Steven Yearley

    • Hardcover $72.00 £56.00
  • Between Facts and Norms

    Between Facts and Norms

    Contributions to a Discourse Theory of Law and Democracy

    Jürgen Habermas

    In Between Facts and Norms, Jürgen Habermas works out the legal and political implications of his Theory of Communicative Action (1981), bringing to fruition the project announced with his publication of The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere in 1962. This new work is a major contribution to recent debates on the rule of law and the possibilities of democracy in postindustrial societies, but it is much more. The introduction by William Rehg succinctly captures the special nature of the work, noting that it offers a sweeping, sociologically informed conceptualization of law and basic rights, a normative account of the rule of law and the constitutional state, an attempt to bridge normative and empirical approaches to democracy, and an account of the social context required for democracy. Finally, the work frames and caps these arguments with a bold proposal for a new paradigm of law that goes beyond the dichotomies that have afflicted modern political theory from its inception and that still underlie current controversies between so-called liberals and civic republicans. The book includes a postscript written in 1994, which restates the argument in light of its initial reception, and two appendixes, which cover key developments that preceded the book. Habermas himself was actively involved in the translation, adapting the text as necessary to make it more accessible to English-speaking readers.

    • Hardcover $95.00
    • Paperback $55.00