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Charles Taylor (b. 1931), Canadian social theorist and philosopher of modernity, is an advocate of the hermeneutic approach to social scientific research and author of the highly regarded Sources of the Self: The Making of the Modern Identity (1989). Educated at McGill and Oxford, Taylor combines Anglo-American and Continental philosophies to address problems across the social and human sciences. Most notably, Taylor has offered a sustained critique of the naturalist and reductionist accounts of human behavior that have predominated in modern philosophy and social science. More recently, this critique has addressed the nihilistic implications of postmodern and poststructuralist philosophies. As an alternative for the social sciences, Taylor proposes a hermeneutic understanding of human behavior that valorizes the integrity and agency of persons. Human beings are ...

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