In a seminal essay published over a decade ago, when postmodernism, poststructuralism and deconstructionism were still in their embryonic stage, Richard Bernstein characterized the intellectual climate of the day in terms that are still useful. At the center of his reconstruction was the contest between, on the one hand, the objectivist attempt to identify an invariant – though no longer ontological or transcendental or bound up with the notion of reason in history – basis for all judgments of validity and, on the other hand, a new relativism which takes the form of an anthropologically and sociologically informed contextualism.1 In this chapter I want to argue that the notion of phronesis, usually thought to belong in the skeptical and contextualist camp, bears no necessary relation to relativism, but constitutes one of the conceptual tools that can help us formulate a notion of validity capable of embedding some form of universalism while being consistent with the Linguistic Turn and the fact of pluralism.