Rethinking Reality: Lucretius and the Textualization of Nature provides a lucid and concise introduction to contemporary debates about representation and the status of scientific claims, epistemological issues central to the so-called Science Wars. The book offers a stimulating reading of Lucretius's poem on physics, On the Nature of Things (De Rerum Naturum), which Duncan Kennedy uses as a case study in the historicization of scientific theory. The book provocatively explores the historical, philosophical, and literary issues surrounding the question of the relationship between representation and reality. It engages in a sustained argument about realist assumptions in scientific and other discourses through detailed analysis and discussion of some of the most important recent contributions in this debate. What are the implications of regarding such knowledge as "discovered" or "invented"? How is the rhetoric of such claims to be identified and the pretensions of those claims assessed? In what ways can realist and constructivist approaches be reconciled? How do these considerations affect the way we read scientific texts from the past and regard them historically? What emerges from this book is a fresh and challenging assessment of the role of time and temporal perspective in assessing claims to knowledge and of the importance of textuality in conceptualizing issues of continuity and discontinuity in the history of knowledge. Engaging sympathetically, but not uncritically, with constructivist accounts of scientific knowledge, the book takes up a sustained critique of writing by Ian Hacking, Evelyn Fox Keller, Bruno Latour, and Hans-Jörg Rheinberger, among others. A wide variety of readers, from classicists and intellectual historians to epistemologists of science, will enjoy and learn from Rethinking Reality.