What are the reasons for believing scientific theories to be true? The contemporary debate around scientific realism exposes questions about the very nature of scientific knowledge. A Critical Introduction to Scientific Realism explores and advances the main topics of the debate, allowing epistemologists to make new connections with the philosophy of science.
Moving from its origins in logical positivism to some of the most recent issues discussed in the literature, this critical introduction covers the no-miracles argument, the pessimistic meta-induction and structural realism. Placing arguments in their historical context, Paul Dicken approaches scientific realism debate as a particular instance of our more general epistemological investigations. The recurrent theme is that the scientific realism debate is in fact a pseudo-philosophical question.
Concerned with the methodology of the scientific realism debate, Dicken asks what it means to offer an epistemological assessment of our scientific practices. Taking those practices as a guide to our epistemological reflections, A Critical Introduction to Scientific Realism fills a gap in current introductory texts and presents a fresh approach to understanding a crucial debate.
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Number of pages: 224
Weight: 388 g
Dimensions: 234 x 156 x 15 mm
Paul Dicken has written a superb introduction to the scientific realism debate. Placing the debate within the history of recent philosophy of science, he unravels its epistemological presuppositions, narrates its numerous twists and turns and examines, with fairness and insight, the main arguments and positions-both classic and recent. Dicken's critical introduction offers a well-crafted map of a complex philosophical terrain. It will be essential reading for anyone interested in scientific realism. -- Stathis Psillos, Professor of the History and Philosophy of Science, University of Athens, Greece
... [A]n excellent textbook for an upper-level undergraduate course on the topic of scientific realism ... Overall, the book provides an interesting new lens through which to view the scientific realism debate. It provides an excellent balance between careful exposition of specific arguments and awareness of the big picture. It is therefore very much worth reading. * Metascience *