What Is Applied About "Applied" Philosophy?
Kopelman, Loretta M.
Journal of Medicine and Philosophy. 1990 Apr; 15(2): 199-218.
"Applied" is a technical term describing a variety of new philosophical enterprises. The author examines and rejects the view that these fields are derivative. Whatever principles, judgments, or background theories that are employed to solve problems in these areas are either changed by how they are used, or at least the possibility exists of their being changed. Hence we ought to stop calling these endeavors "applied", or agree that the meaning of "apply" will have to include the possibility that what is applied may be changed. The so-called applied fields of philosophy, therefore, are not derivative. The strongest cases to the contrary are the foundationalist views that what we apply is epistemically privileged. Different foundationalist views take different principles, judgments, or background theories to be epistemically privileged. Strong and weak versions of each of these foundationalist views are considered but none establish these fields as derivative.
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