“In particular, it’s hard to imagine science without an objective and definable truth.”
I do find myself wondering about the relationship between Postmodernism as a phenomenan in art, philosophy and literature and Quantum Theory as a scientific world view. I think quantum theory is the beginning of a science without an objective and definable truth, but mathematicians can still find a way to describe it fairly well with probability. I’ve read a number of writers who believe that art and literature produces the world view necessary for the next wave of scientific discoveries and theories. When you see that many discoveries are independently made at the same time, and sometimes discoveries languish for years before suddenly catching on it becomes easier to believe that the actors of scientific progress are cultures not scientists. It’s interesting that some of the originators of Quantum personally hated the idea, almost as if the culture forced a bunch of people who were modernist by nature to discover what seems like a very postmodern truth. Of course, things work the other way too.
What can be known has always been a central question in philosophy, and little progress has been made. I’m personally with Descarte and Berkeley: we know that there are thoughts and minds and we know that we are a mind and we exist. All else (including the exact meaning of these words) is speculation. Of course some speculations are more reasonable than others.
I think that Godels proof that interesting mathematical and logical systems are incomplete or unsound, and quantums proof that observations and reality are in continous interaction immediately put the whole concept of discovering reality through making observations on very shaky ground.
Your philosophical model of universe may actually be affecting the physical universe.
Any ideas about where the current trends in literature and art will lead the scientists of the future?