Ian's Theory Of Dynamic Nominalism

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According to Ian Hacking Making Up people, based on historical analysis, where it refers to the simultaneous process whereby new ideas serve to create newly categorized kind of people. In order to illustrate the ways in which how people are made up, Ian proposed a new theory called dynamic nominalism, a middle ground between traditional nominalism which contends that “all categories, classes, and taxonomies are given by human minds rather than nature” (165) and traditional realism which contends that categories are given neatly by nature and these categories are not just the result of our minds and whereby this also applies to human beings. In other words, especially when it comes to human reality, the latter asserts that the ontological reality…show more content…
As we mentioned earlier, dynamic Nominalism works when new ideas are invented and the new category is set up, by so-called experts, at the same time new kind of people are come into being or made to fit those categories. Yet this new idea was not formed in vacuums rather there were factors and conditions that give rise or set the motion for such invention of ideas. In the case of Black Criminality, for instance, the evolutionary Darwinian concept of human beings as well as the ways in which the socio-cultural development in the form of progressive Era of 1890’s were the main reasons behind the invention of a new concept of classification in the society. As a result, the census was created, new categories were crafted, to determine the inner character, the moral quality, of black people based on the outward action and appearance. Thus based on the data gathered not only newly ascribed ontological reality was created but also newly incriminated, based on skin color, black people identity was created. In other words, the census, where the new ideas were applied, was used to manufacture new kind of people to fit the experts’ or those who were in socio-politico power preconceived idea of the…show more content…
So unlike nominalism which render disassociation with nature (no real connection with nature in an of itself) and as a result seems to be powerless to affect, change and create new identity; and rigid realism as if to show kind of arrogance to know the nature or the essence of the other in and of itself; Ian gives us dynamic nominalism, as a middle ground which shows the dialectical relationship between human words (the result of human thoughts) and reality which is not fixed but in progress of change. Yet due to this flexibility, dynamic Nominalism attempt to show that it is futile to domesticate or even control both human ontological identity and reality, especially as it was and is done by the experts or so-called powerful and dominant people in the socio-cultural and political
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