30 | 2009
Dire l'espace : Figures de l'expertise
In telling, a boundary is already set. Within boundaries, there is the possibility of telling. One cannot exist without the other. The importance of this perspective, and of these articles brought together to illustrate it, is to demonstrate that expertise does not only contribute to seeing, meaning an intelligent and intelligible effort to grasp what is real, but also that in a sometimes overt and sometimes covert manner, telling may become the palaver of the legitimization of the order that it is intended to construct. Understood in this way, the construction of a critical history of expertise becomes an urgent necessity. This issue of Siècles seeks to stimulate a reformulation of the historical discourse on the “inexorable rise” of technical power in social life. Does the role of expertise from the Middle Ages to our period follow a linear evolution, or is it rather a decisive rupture across time that opens the industrial era? These various articles lay the groundwork necessary to an understanding of the full context of expertise. They take into account all that can be apprehended in the relationship between expertise and the social role of rationality in fixing choices, whether the stakes concern the law, finance, land use, or political economy.
Traduction : Marie Bolton