Definition of relativism in English:



  • The doctrine that knowledge, truth, and morality exist in relation to culture, society, or historical context, and are not absolute.

    • ‘The three introductory readings come out of the rich anthropological literature on culture and cultural relativism.’
    • ‘It is this crude version of relativism about truth which I am concerned with here, not its more sophisticated philosophical cousins.’
    • ‘The debate about relativism turns on separating truth claims and actions.’
    • ‘That is something that you often hear about from the perspective of cultural relativism.’
    • ‘Cultural relativism states that there is no objective truth.’
    • ‘The relativist must therefore hold that relativism is both true and false.’
    • ‘According to cultural relativism, slavery is wrong if our society disapproves of it.’
    • ‘If so, how does pluralism differ from radical relativism and subjectivism?’
    • ‘One wonders if in the morass of cultural relativism, the only sane ground is to eschew all taboo.’
    • ‘However, relativism is a philosophical doctrine that goes far beyond such obvious facts.’
    • ‘It is not the reality of scepticism or of truth dissolving relativism, but the claim to truth of all formal argument that is affected.’
    • ‘In another situation, relativism and politicalization may serve counterposed goals.’
    • ‘However, the distinction here is between absolutism and relativism, not between absolutism and relationalism.’
    • ‘Yet many people would now pay at least lip-service to the sceptical relativism of Montaigne's generation.’
    • ‘I do use the viewpoint of cultural relativism; I think it's the only thing we can do under the circumstances.’
    • ‘Wittgenstein sometimes appears to be committed to cognitive relativism as just described.’
    • ‘Context is only deemed important when such relativism would be seen to give validity to bigotry, racism and prejudice.’
    • ‘We cannot let cultural relativism becomes the last refuge of repression.’
    • ‘There is more to be said, particularly about the threats of relativism, nihilism, and scepticism, which still lurk.’
    • ‘Such a position does indeed amount to a form of epistemological relativism.’