In this provocative and broad-ranging work, the authors argue that the ways in which knowledge - scientific, social and cultural - is produced are undergoing fundamental changes at the end of the twentieth century. They claim that these changes mark a distinct shift into a new mode of knowledge production which is replacing or reforming established institutions, disciplines, practices and policies. Identifying features of the new mode of knowledge production - reflexivity, transdisciplinarity, heterogeneity - the authors show how these features connect with the changing role of knowledge in social relations. While the knowledge produced by research and development in science and technology is accorded central concern, the

The Case of the Humanities

The case of the humanities


In this chapter we extend our argument to the case of the humanities. Although Mode 2 knowledge production and especially its close association with ‘science going to the market’ may seem alien to the core values and social practices that prevail in the humanities, a closer analysis reveals a different picture. Although the humanities and the definitions of culture as elaborated and inherited from the nineteenth century are commonly regarded as pre-industrial, we argue that many of the characteristics identified by us and illustrated by referring to developments in science and technology, can also be found in the humanities. While this is an easy argument to sustain in straightforward descriptive terms, we have found it much ...

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