Life and Truth

A Response to Joel Backström


  • Hugo Strandberg Åbo Akademi University



Simone Weil, post-truth, self-deception, belief, democracy


The “post-truth” phenomenon is not primarily a cognitive problem, but a moral or existential problem, a problem of self-deception. But what does this mean? In order to clarify that, two things need to be discussed. First, if the conception of belief is rejected according to which a belief has sense in isolation from the roles it, and the holding of it, plays in our lives, then the problem of self-deception needs to be met as a problem of life. Second, a problem of life is not something that individuals get into all by themselves. In other words, ways of living can be self-deceptive. The task of the text is hence to discuss some of the ways in which truth, belief and self-deception unfold on this non-individual level, specifically on the political one.

Keywords: post-truth, self-deception, belief, democracy, Simone Weil

Author Biography

Hugo Strandberg, Åbo Akademi University

Hugo Strandberg is associate professor of philosophy at Åbo Akademi University, Finland, and researcher at the Centre for Ethics, University of Pardubice, Czech Republic. His latest monograph is Self-Knowledge and Self-Deception (Palgrave Macmillan).