There is also a strong tendency to divide human reality into an essentialism emphasizing the predominance of NATURE vs. the artificialism or constructivism of CULTURE. Everyone acknowledges the reality of both, but we tend to weight them differently....What I find most interesting in this pattern is that it seems to reflect a fundamental dualism running deep within us. We spontaneously (perhaps as a personality trait) emphasize either subjectivism/ relativism/ idealism, etc. or we emphasize objectivism/ absolutism/ realism, etc..
Excellent post, JL (yeah, I know, I'm kinda late getting here).
Your suggestion of personality trait(s) playing a big part appeals to me. There have probably been a number of psychological studies done on this topic, but I don't follow them, so I don't know.
In my own experience, though, I have consistently been unable to avoid correlating people's stances on such topics with their apparent personality traits. But I don't know if I really see a consistent pattern. It seems people will often play "devils advocate" and adopt a viewpoint they really don't prefer, if they think it suits their ends and purposes at the time.
Speaking for myself, I certainly acknowledge a significant degree of "flux," uncertainty, subjectivity, and relativity in our affairs, both social and intellectual. That said, my personality seems to naturally clash with those who want to (over)emphasize the role such things play. Needless to say, that goes triple for people who are fanatical about glorifying subjectivity, etc.