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A Reply to J. Judd Owen
The American Political Science Review
Vol. 93, No. 4 (Dec., 1999), pp. 925-930
Published by: American Political Science Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2586122
Page Count: 6
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Although J. Judd Owen's account of my work is on target in many ways, on some points he mischaracterizes my argument by making it claim or do too much. His misunderstandings flow in part from a conflating of two assertions: (1) that our convictions cannot be grounded in any independent source of authority and (2) that our convictions are ungrounded. I certainly assert the first but never the second. Rather, it is my contention that while we have no independent grounds-grounds implicated in no particular vision of life or comprehensive doctrine-we have, because we live within them, the grounds that are constitutive of our everyday lives, their practices and routines. What are the consequences of this argument? My answer is none whatsoever. If you are persuaded that no independent grounds are available, but that the grounds of your everyday practice are sufficient, you will feel neither disabled by what you do not need nor enabled by recognizing the nonindependent foundations you have always rested on and will continue to rest on. In the end, the most salient characteristic of my argument, a characteristic Owen resists, is its minimalism.
The American Political Science Review © 1999 American Political Science Association