Weak-Perspectivism Revisited

It occured to me that there is an objection against my argument on weak perspectivism which I presented here:


In 2.1, I claim that there is some mechanism in each perspective which determines what is true in that perspective, e.g. Aristotle knows how to determine what is true in his own perspective, etc.  Is this a metaphysical or an epistemological claim?  If it is an epistemological claim, then my argument seems invalid, for I use this premise to establish the metaphysical conclusion that strong-perspectivism is true in his own perspective because he has determined that it is true.  If ‘determined’ means ‘knows,’ then the argument is invalid for jumping from epistemological to metaphysical conclusions.

And yet, the rules seem to be different in perspecivism.  In traditional philosophy, there is a Truth, and the job of the philosopher is to conform one’s mind to that Truth.  There is a distinction between the knower and the thing known.  My knowledge or lack thereof has no effect on what is real or true.  However, it is not clear if there is the same distinction in perspectivism.  Granted, perspectivists acknowledge that there are few if any truths that are true across all perspectives.  Truth is a function of perspective, not a conformity of the mind to “things in themselves.” 

Nietzsche–and to my knowledge other perspectivists–have never given an adequate account of what makes a given proposition true or false in a given perspective.  Although I don’t have the resources present to find the exact quotation, in one place Nietzsche clearly states that there is a distinction between beliefs and truths in a perspective.  Does this mean that there are “absolute truths” within a perspective?  As if people occupying the same perspective (e.g. that of an Aristotelian) are really arguing over some perspective-dependent thing-in-itself?  Somehow, I doubt that the perspectivist wants to make this move, for reasons I cited in my last post.  How do we discriminate between two Aristotelians who have a disagreement from within a perspective?  We are then left with the same problem that perspectivism found so repugnant in absolutist theories of truth:  after thousands of years of fighting, no one has arrived at a consensus on what is absolutely true.  Thus they abandon absolute truth altogether.  This situation seems no different:  within a perspective, if there is some “Truth” within a perspective which is “discovered” and not created, then the perspectivist has not avoided the problem he was attempting to avoid.

Which leads me to my argument:  the only way I can think of to determine what is true in a given perspective is for the perspective-holder to determine what is true.  Nietzsche, of course, wants to argue that perspectives create truth, and there can be no perspectives without a person holding that perspective;  and since Nietzsche makes it clear that there is no use distinguishing between the perspective and the person holding the perspective (which explains why Nietzsche felt no qualms about resorting to ad hominem attacks when criticizing philosophical positions), it seems that the perspective holder generates the truth of the given perspective.  But if this is the case, then it seems very odd to say that a person can be wrong about what is true in his perspective.  Who is to tell him that he is wrong?

So it seems to me that the perspectivist’s knowledge of his perspective also creates the truth of the perspective.  If this is the case, then I am not guilty of an invalid argument from jumping from my epistemological claim to the metaphysical conclusion.  Of course, the perspectivist is welcome to avoid my conclusion by coming up with an alternate account of how truths are generated in a perspective other than the one that the perspective-holder generates it.  I wish them luck: as soon as they step out of the realm of subjective entities formulating truths, they start wondering into the realm of subject-independent truths, which the perspectivist seeks to avoid in the first place.

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