Eutopia

Eutopia

New Philosophy and New Law for a Troubled World

Philip Allott

There is a vacuum of philosophy to make sense of a world dominated by a disorderly global economy, by science and engineering, by ideologies, and by popular culture. There is a vacuum of law to bring order to relations between states that are more threatening than they have ever been. Thomas More’s Utopia (1516) re-thought everything in another difficult new world. Philip Allott’s Eutopia (2016) reclaims the best of human thought to empower us in making a better human world.

Chapter 7: The Power of Knowledge

Philip Allott

Subjects: law - academic, human rights, law and society, legal philosophy, public international law

Extract

We think, we feel, we imagine – and so we make our world. But do we know anything? Do we know the things that we think that we know? In all four existential realms of the human condition (§§2.5ff.) – supernatural, natural, social, personal – we know more than we think that we know, and less. The verb ‘to know’ is one of the verbs that we use most frequently in everyday life. I know New York. I know Swahili. I know roses. I know what happened. I know her mother. I know right from wrong. I know my limits. I know that e equals mc2. I know the origin of the universe. I know God. I know the meaning of life. I know capitalism. I know that poem by heart. I know that I know nothing. I know what I like. I know suffering. I know my mind. I know who I am. I know, but I cannot put it into words. Who knows?

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