Popper, a science of history and free agency
September 27th, 2018 •
Popper’s views on science have been influential, and his critique of marxism, Poverty of Historicism is almost a classic but while it is easy to debunk historical theories the fact remains that no theory of history is likely to be scientific in the sense indicated. Along with isaiah berlin’s critique of historical inevitability the issue charged is the failure to indicate the way free agency enters the analysis making ‘historical laws’ problematical. That’s a fair criticism but to apply it in isolation to marxists is a bit outrageous. Every tom dick and harry in the historical science charade made this mistake long before marx and can continue to make it as long as he doesn’t tamper with capitalist ideology.
Our model of the eonic effect makes the issue explicit in its distinction of system action and free action and demonstrates, short of laws of history, a way to approach the issue systematically.
Let us note that darwinism makes the same mistake in the way it posits the construction of free agency via natural selection, as a deterministic, more, a random process. So much for fair critiques.