Subjectivism


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

Subjectivism

 

a world view that ignores the objective approach to reality and denies the existence of objective laws of nature and society. Subjectivism is one of the main epistemological sources of idealism. In essence, it grants primacy to the role played by the subject in various spheres of activity and in the cognitive process above all. The concomitant abstraction of thought, which does not correspond to the nature of objects, leads ultimately to a divorce from reality, subjective blindness, agnosticism, and relativism (see V. I. Lenin, Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 29, p. 322).

Subjectivism has been expounded by such philosophers as G. Berkeley, D. Hume, and J. G. Fichte; the philosophy of I. Kant is also marked by subjectivist concepts. In the bourgeois philosophy of the 19th and 20th centuries, subjectivism has been a basic principle of such idealist schools of thought as neo-Kan-tianism, empiriocriticism, philosophy of life, pragmatism, neopositivism, and existentialism.

According to Marxist philosophy, which rejects subjectivism, the subject’s active role in practical life and in the cognitive process presupposes the existence of a dialectical relationship between subject and object as well as the existence of an objective reality that has its own laws and is independent of consciousness. Various distortions of Marxism-Leninism have their foundations in subjectivism. Right-wing revisionism, proceeding from a subjectivist understanding of practice, eclectically attempts to combine the principles of Marxist philosophy with subjectivist philosophical conceptions, such as existentialism and pragmatism. The left-wing revision of Marxism-Leninism is an attempt to replace its creative theory with a system of subjectively interpreted dogmas that serve as a justification for voluntarism.

In the political sphere, subjectivism is reflected in policy decisions based on arbitrary, unscientific principles, a contemptuous attitude toward the laws of society, and a belief in the omnipotence of administrative decisions. Genuinely scientific policymaking combines a strictly objective approach to reality with recognition of activism and initiative displayed by the masses, by social classes, and by individuals. This approach is a guarantee against subjectivism in any form.

References in periodicals archive ?
Greenfield's subjectivism in educational administration.
The conclusion of this part of the Article is that the debate between objectivism and subjectivism rests on a false premise.
The difference between subjectivism and objectivism appears to be partly which, and largely in what manner, objective elements of conduct become constitutive of the agent's criminality.
Not only does subjectivism imply that everyone is morally infallible, it also implies that moral disagreement is next to impossible.
Finally and most intriguingly, Nagel connects the appeal of subjectivism to a "fear of religion" that preys upon modern intellectuals, himself included.
We might take our metaethical subjectivism to undermine our ability to ascribe moral terms, because there are no moral truths that underpin those ascriptions.
Yet, as he effectively documents, the pervasiveness of subjectivism renders it nearly invisible unless it is repeatedly and vividly exposed.
methodological individualism, subjectivism, unintended consequences of human action uncertainty, ignorance, the quest for information, micro analysis, valuation at the margin, rejection of mathematics, all derive from the Grundsatze of 1871.
Finally, there is a sense of moral skepticism or, at any rate, moral subjectivism underlying the entire liberal outlook.
Revolting against the subjectivism and imaginative escapism that seemed to characterize the romantic school, the naturalist writers were influenced by the biological theories of Darwin and the social and economic determinism of Taine and Marx.
Religion--if tempered by Enlightenment values, as the practice of Judaism and Christianity generally are today--is certainly better than sheer whim-worship or secular subjectivism.