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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Relativism by University of California, Irvine

38 ratings

About the Course

Relativism is an ancient philosophical doctrine which has recurred time and again in the history of philosophy. It has also transcended the boundaries of that discipline, for it has shaped much of the methodology in anthropology and sociology, as well as in critical theory and literary studies. While often advocated for its supposed tolerance of differences, relativism has profound consequences for how we think of reality, for the possibility of knowledge, both in the factual and in the moral domain, and may engender the practice of double standard. If a wind is hot for me and cold for you and none of us is at fault, does this mean that reality is always perspectival, or that it admits of contradictory descriptions? If a belief turns out to be justified when evaluated within a certain epistemic system (such as religion, for instance), while it turns out to be unjustified if assessed from within a different one (science, say), does relativism undermine the very possibility of knowledge? If an action can be morally permissible within an ethical system and not so within a different one, does that challenge the idea that there are moral truths and moral progress? These are some of the questions we will engage in during the course, while considering examples taken from the history of science, such as the Bellarmine-Galileo dispute, and from everyday life. This course is aimed at anyone who is interested in learning more about philosophy, along with those who are looking for strategies to combat extremism in their communities. Using these approaches, no matter what your skill levels in topics you would like to master, you can change your thinking and change your life. In this course, learners will: Explore the concept of Relativism Discuss the role of Relativism in contemporary society Identify common responses to Relativism Compare/Contrast various forms of Relativism Recognize how epistemic relativism can be used to explain important events in the history of science and crucial discoveries in anthropology Create a presentation with your personal perspective on one of the forms of relativism...

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1 - 10 of 10 Reviews for Relativism

By Russell B

Jul 22, 2020

Great course with very detailed, useful notes in addition to the lectures. Note that it's a bit more advanced than most Coursera courses. Don't be put off by that, but if you don't already have some background in philosophy I recommend taking the same institution's Skepticism course first. The latter is a bit easier for beginners and will provide a perfect lead-in to this one.

By Kam L

Mar 22, 2021

Interesting topic but difficult to understand.

By Morgan R

Dec 10, 2020

Content-wise, a good overview of some prominent figures in the relativism literature. However, the reading material is not only full of typos, but exhibits frequent misrepresentation of the content of relativism. These presumably have not been addressed because the course organiser is dismissive of the theoretical potential of relativism as a philosophical framework. Those faults would have been tolerable if there had been any personal feedback whatsoever on any of the course content, but alas there was none. This is my first course on Coursera, so perhaps this is normal, but it didn't make for a very engaging learning experience for me personally.

By Bryan F

Sep 7, 2020

This is an excellent course. Thank you. I searched to find a full MOOC on Relativism and so glad I found this one. I'll be back to take more UCI Philosophy courses, Peace.

By Brian P

Dec 1, 2022

I'm delighted of this course. Thanks !

By Rafael A T

Apr 26, 2021

Excellent course, congratulations.

By Shreyas K

Jan 13, 2021

The essay part was good but had to listen to the professor twice because she was speaking very fast in the Philosophy jargon. I had to stop and google and comprehend what she was saying. It could have also been my own shortcomings in the cognitive skills, but that is what I felt.

By Clifton L

Apr 24, 2020

This course is interesting regarding our current political discussion within the United States. The various perspectives within our political discussion can be viewed through the relativism lens in order to gain a clearer perspective.

By Cassandra H

Apr 11, 2022

i found that the quizzes were NOT reflective of the either the video lectures or the readings...i read these things several times to no avail.

By Joy S

Jun 7, 2019

I think this course has technical glitches and shouldn't have passed beta review. It says I watched the videos of week 4 and I haven't