The Philosophy of Science

Author: George Couvalis
Publisher: SAGE
ISBN: 9780761951018
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This comprehensive textbook provides a clear nontechnical introduction to the philosophy of science. Through asking whether science can provide us with objective knowledge of the world, the book provides a thorough and accessible guide to the key thinkers and debates that define the field. George Couvalis surveys traditional themes around theory and observation, induction, probability, falsification and rationality as well as more recent challenges to objectivity including relativistic, feminist and sociological readings. This provides a helpful framework in which to locate the key intellectual contributions to these debates, ranging from those of Mill and Hume, through Popper and Kuhn to Laudan, Bloor and Garfinkel among

Bachelard Science and Objectivity

Author: Mary Tiles
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521289733
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Concentrates on Bachelard's central critique of scientific knowledge. Reveals that his concern with discontinuities in the history of science is in accord with recent debates about the nature of rationality and the "incommensurability" of different scientific theories.

Objectivity in Science

Author: Flavia Padovani
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319143492
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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This highly multidisciplinary collection discusses an increasingly important topic among scholars in science and technology studies: objectivity in science. It features eleven essays on scientific objectivity from a variety of perspectives, including philosophy of science, history of science, and feminist philosophy. Topics addressed in the book include the nature and value of scientific objectivity, the history of objectivity, and objectivity in scientific journals and communities. Taken individually, the essays supply new methodological tools for theorizing what is valuable in the pursuit of objective knowledge and for investigating its history. The essays offer many starting points, while suggesting new avenues of research. Taken collectively, the essays exemplify the very virtues of objectivity that they theorize—in reading them together, the reader can sense various anxieties about the dangerously subjective in our age and locate commonalities of concern as well as differences of approach. As a result, the volume offers an expansive vision of a research community seeking a communal understanding of its own methods and its own epistemic anxieties, struggling to enunciate the key problems of knowledge of our time and offer insight into how to overcome them.

Objectivity in the Feminist Philosophy of Science

Author: Karen Cordrick Haely
Publisher: A&C Black
ISBN: 1441106456
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Scientific knowledge is widely considered to be the most certain kind of knowledge, free from social or cultural bias. This freedom from bias or values, the objectivity of science, is a key reason why scientific knowledge holds its privileged position in society. Karen Cordrick Haely argues that feminist critics of science present compelling reasons to eschew the idea that science is, or should be, purely objective in the sense commonly understood to mean 'value-free'. This book examines the most prominent feminist ideas regarding how to revise and enrich the concept of objectivity such that we can understand, though not necessarily eliminate, the role of cultural and social interests as they play a role in science. Haely argues that these views of objectivity ought to be treated as a network of ideas, rather than as stand-alone solutions to the complexities of forming a cohesive philosophical view of scientific objectivity. The book also presents a landscape of several issues that are crucial for understanding the intersection of feminism and science.

Science Values and Objectivity

Author: Peter Machamer
Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Pre
ISBN: 0822970864
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Collection of essays that identify the values crucial to science, distinguish some of the criteria that can be used for value identification, and elaborate the conditions for warranting certain values as necessary or central to scientific research.

Values and Objectivity in Science

Author: Hugh Lacey
Publisher: Lexington Books
ISBN: 9780739111413
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This book offers an account of how values play an important role within scientific practices, and how this account illuminates many ethical issues that arise concerning scientific practices and applications.

Science as Social Knowledge

Author: Helen E. Longino
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691020518
Format: PDF, Kindle
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"Helen Longino has written a timely book that fills a critical gap in the existing literature between philosophy of science and the social studies of science. Her exposition of scientific inquiry as a context-laden process provides the conceptual tools we need to understand how social expectations shape the development of science while at the same time recognizing the dependence of scientific inquiry on its interactions with natural phenomena. This is an important book precisely because there is none other quite like it." --Evelyn Fox Keller, author of "Reflections on Gender and Science" Conventional wisdom has it that the sciences, properly pursued, constitute a pure, value-free method of obtaining knowledge about the natural world. In light of the social and normative dimensions of many scientific debates, Helen Longino finds that general accounts of scientific methodology cannot support this common belief. Focusing on the notion of evidence, the author argues that a methodology powerful enough to account for theories of any scope and depth is incapable of ruling out the influence of social and cultural values in the very structuring of knowledge. The objectivity of scientific inquiry can nevertheless be maintained, she proposes, by understanding scientific inquiry as a social rather than an individual process. Seeking to open a dialogue between methodologists and social critics of the sciences, Longino develops this concept of "contextual empiricism" in an analysis of research programs that have drawn criticism from feminists. Examining theories of human evolution and of prenatal hormonal determination of "gender-role" behavior, of sex differences in cognition, and of sexualorientation, the author shows how assumptions laden with social values affect the description, presentation, and interpretation of data. In particular, Longino argues that research on the hormonal basis of "sex-differentiated behavior" involves assumptions not only about gender relations but also about human action and agency. She concludes with a discussion of the relation between science, values, and ideology, based on the work of Habermas, Foucault, Keller, and Haraway.

The Advancement of Science

Author: Philip Kitcher
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
ISBN: 0195096533
Format: PDF, Kindle
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During the last three decades, reflections on the growth of scientific knowledge have inspired historians, sociologists, and some philosophers to contend that scientific objectivity is a myth. In this book, Kitcher attempts to resurrect the notions of objectivity and progress in science by identifying both the limitations of idealized treatments of growth of knowledge and the overreactions to philosophical idealizations. Recognizing that science is done not by logically omniscient subjects working in isolation, but by people with a variety of personal and social interests, who cooperate and compete with one another, he argues that, nonetheless, we may conceive the growth of science as a process in which both our vision of nature and our ways of learning more about nature improve. Offering a detailed picture of the advancement of science, he sets a new agenda for the philosophy of science and for other "science studies" disciplines.

Objectivity and Diversity

Author: Sandra Harding
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022624153X
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Worries about scientific objectivity seem never-ending. Social critics and philosophers of science have argued that invocations of objectivity are often little more than attempts to boost the status of a claim, while calls for value neutrality may be used to suppress otherwise valid dissenting positions. Objectivity is used sometimes to advance democratic agendas, at other times to block them; sometimes for increasing the growth of knowledge, at others to resist it. Sandra Harding is not ready to throw out objectivity quite yet. For all of its problems, she contends that objectivity is too powerful a concept simply to abandon. In Objectivity and Diversity, Harding calls for a science that is both more epistemically adequate and socially just, a science that would ask: How are the lives of the most economically and politically vulnerable groups affected by a particular piece of research? Do they have a say in whether and how the research is done? Should empirically reliable systems of indigenous knowledge count as "real science"? Ultimately, Harding argues for a shift from the ideal of a neutral, disinterested science to one that prizes fairness and responsibility.

Science Policy and the Value Free Ideal

Author: Heather Douglas
Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Pre
ISBN: 9780822973577
Format: PDF
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The role of science in policymaking has gained unprecedented stature in the United States, raising questions about the place of science and scientific expertise in the democratic process. Some scientists have been given considerable epistemic authority in shaping policy on issues of great moral and cultural significance, and the politicizing of these issues has become highly contentious. Since World War II, most philosophers of science have purported the concept that science should be “value-free.” In Science, Policy and the Value-Free Ideal, Heather E. Douglas argues that such an ideal is neither adequate nor desirable for science. She contends that the moral responsibilities of scientists require the consideration of values even at the heart of science. She lobbies for a new ideal in which values serve an essential function throughout scientific inquiry, but where the role values play is constrained at key points, thus protecting the integrity and objectivity of science. In this vein, Douglas outlines a system for the application of values to guide scientists through points of uncertainty fraught with moral valence. Following a philosophical analysis of the historical background of science advising and the value-free ideal, Douglas defines how values should-and should not-function in science. She discusses the distinctive direct and indirect roles for values in reasoning, and outlines seven senses of objectivity, showing how each can be employed to determine the reliability of scientific claims. Douglas then uses these philosophical insights to clarify the distinction between junk science and sound science to be used in policymaking. In conclusion, she calls for greater openness on the values utilized in policymaking, and more public participation in the policymaking process, by suggesting various models for effective use of both the public and experts in key risk assessments.