What is this thing called science? / Alan Chalmers
- Chalmers, A. F. (Alan Francis), 1939-
- Indianapolis : Hackett Publishing Company, Inc., 
- Copyright Date:
- Fourth edition.
- Physical Description:
- xxi, 282 pages ; 22 cm
- Machine generated contents note: 1.Science as knowledge derived from the facts of experience -- A widely held commonsense view of science -- Seeing is believing -- Visual experiences not determined solely by the object viewed -- Observable facts expressed as statements -- Why should facts precede theory? -- The fallibility of observation statements -- Further reading -- 2.Observation as practical intervention -- Observation: passive and private or active and public? -- Galileo and the moons of Jupiter -- Observable facts objective but fallible -- Further reading -- 3.Experiment -- Not just facts but relevant facts -- The production and updating of experimental results -- Transforming the experimental base of science: historical examples -- Experiment as an adequate basis for science -- Further reading -- 4.Deriving theories from the facts: induction -- Introduction -- Baby logic -- Can scientific laws be derived from the facts? -- What constitutes a good inductive argument? -- Further problems with inductivism -- The appeal of inductivism -- Further reading -- 5.Introducing falsificationism -- Introduction -- A logical point in favour of falsificationism -- Falsifiability as a criterion for theories -- Degree of falsifiability, clarity and precision -- Falsificationism and progress -- Further reading -- 6.Sophisticated falsificationism, novel predictions and the growth of science -- Relative rather than absolute degrees of falsifiability -- Increasing falsifiability and ad hoc modifications -- Confirmation in the falsificationist account of science -- Boldness, novelty and background knowledge -- Comparison of the inductivist and falsificationist view of confirmation -- Advantages of falsificationism over inductivism -- Further reading -- 7.The limitations of falsificationism -- Problems stemming from the logical situation -- Falsificationism inadequate on historical grounds -- The Copernican Revolution -- Inadequacies of the falsificationist demarcation criterion and Popper's response -- Further reading -- 8.Theories as structures I: Kuhn's paradigms -- Theories as structures -- Introducing Thomas Kuhn -- Paradigms and normal science -- Crisis and revolution -- The function of normal science and revolutions -- The merits of Kuhn's account of science -- Kuhn's ambivalence on progress through revolutions -- Objective knowledge -- Further reading -- 9.Theories as structures II: research programs -- Introducing Imre Lakatos -- Lakatos's research programs -- Methodology within a program and the comparison of programs -- Novel predictions -- Testing the methodology against history -- Problems with Lakatos's methodology -- Further reading -- 10.Feyerabend's anarchistic theory of science -- The story so far -- Feyerabend's case against method -- Feyerabend's advocacy of freedom -- Critique of Feyerabend's individualism -- Further reading -- 11.Methodical changes in method -- Against universal method -- Telescopic for naked-eye data: a change in standards -- Piecemeal change of theory, method and standards -- A light-hearted interlude -- Further reading -- 12.The Bayesian approach -- Introduction -- Bayes' theorem -- Subjective Bayesianism -- Applications of the Bayesian formula -- Critique of subjective Bayesianism -- Further reading -- 13.The new experimentalism -- Introduction -- Experiment with life of its own -- Deborah Mayo on severe experimental testing -- Learning from error and triggering revolutions -- The new experimentalism in perspective -- Appendix: happy meetings of theory and experiment -- Further reading -- 14.Why should the world obey laws? -- Introduction -- Laws as regularities -- Laws as characterisations of powers or dispositions -- Thermodynamic and conservation laws -- Further reading -- 15.Realism and anti-realism -- Introduction -- Global anti-realism: language, truth and reality -- Anti-realism -- Some standard objections and the anti-realist response -- Scientific realism and conjectural realism -- Idealisation -- Unrepresentative realism or structural realism -- Further reading -- 16.Epilogue to the third edition -- Further reading -- 17.Postscript -- Introduction -- Confirmation by arguments from coincidence -- Philosophical versus scientific knowledge of atoms -- Independent evidence and the `theory-dependence of observation': Perrin's experiments on Brownian motion -- Partitioning of theories: atomism in nineteenth-century chemistry -- Realism versus anti-realism again -- Strongly confirmed theories are never completely discarded -- Approximate truth is all we have -- Levels of reality -- Further reading.
- 9781624660399 (cloth), 1624660398 (cloth), 9781624660382 (pbk.), and 162466038X (pbk.)
- Bibliography Note:
- Includes bibliographical references and index.
View MARC record | catkey: 11341268