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Navigating the Epistemic Shift: Unveiling ChatGPTʼs Impact on Traditional and Subjugated Knowledge Forms
ChatGPT, in its general approach, follows the discourse structure of scientificity, balancing arguments from a presumably 'objective' standpoint and utilizing empirical explanations to address questions. In contrast, 'subjugated knowledges' that have been marginalized or dismissed due to their perceived lack of scientific validity will be thoroughly challenged in the emerging epistemic shift. ChatGPT marks the beginning of generalized, ubiquitous AI that builds on the foundation of scientificity. As a text-centric system, it leaves no space for non-discursive approaches— such as adab and taṣawwuf in the Islamic tradition— which are fundamental components of traditional sciences. ChatGPT's subject/object-based response structure significantly differs from the nuanced and experiential knowledge embedded in the qasida (Arabic ode), a form closely associated with lived experiences, attuned knowledge forms, environmental awareness, and ritualistic commemorations. We are now grappling with an epistemic shift of a different order, pushing cybernetics and semiotics—here, I am using semiotics as a composite function of surface, screen, and scientificity— as the dominant forces shaping human knowledge and material dimensions. This transformation has the potential to undermine non-scientific modes of knowing, deeply rooted in cultural, genealogical, and experiential domains, offering unique insights and understandings that may not fit neatly within the framework of scientific objectivity.
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