ABSTRACT

According to F.A. Hanson the interest of anthropologists in the debate on rationality and relativism has been limited and their contributions have been few, because the philosophers who started the discussion use a model for the explanation of human behavior which is very different from the one normally favored by anthropologists. Human beings as well as animals are able to produce a great variety of structures: nests, honey, buildings, scientific theories, and so on. Extreme relativism only seems necessary for those who believe that dogmatism, belief in a scientific reality, is the only alternative. The way in which anthropologists treat the unexplainable cannot claim to be scientific, because such treatment rests on opinions and views, the objective reality of which must be denied, if only because of the way they are talked about.