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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Critical reason is the only alternative to violence, 26 May 2008
Luc REYNAERT (Beernem, Belgium) - See all my reviews
Besides clearly explaining Popper's well-known positions on the distinction between scientific and non-scientific propositions, testing possibilities for falsifications of theories or piecemeal adaptations of social systems, this book constitutes the burial of the Frankfurter Schule (Adorno, Habermas, Horkheimer).
By the way, non-scientific propositions are not meaningless (e.g., music, literature, myths).
Science probably began with myths, superstitions and prejudices.

K.R. Popper rejects the myth of the framework, `the doctrine of the impossibility of mutual understanding between different cultures, generations or historical periods, even within science, even within physics.'
Critical reasoning and open discussions (`without killing any authors or burning books') should always be allowed and be the bacon of all our theories about and solutions of practical and theoretical problems. `Man has achieved the possibility of being critical of his own tentative trials, of his own theories.'

Frankfurter Schule
Popper torpedoes the Critical Theory of the Frankfurter Schule as follows: `Horkheimer rejects, without argument and in defiance of historical facts, the possibility of reforming our so-called `social system'. This amounts to saying: let the present generations suffer and perish - for all we can do is to expose the ugliness of the world we live in, and to heap insults on our oppressors, the bourgeoisie.'
He also lambastes the supreme influence of Hegelianism on German philosophy (`a tradition destructive of intelligence and critical thought'). He sides here with Marx who remarked that `in its mystifying form dialectics became the ruling German fashion.'

This book is a must read for all those interested in philosophy and, of course, for all `critical' Popper fans.
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