Kuhn's Evolutionary Social Epistemology

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Cambridge University Press, Sep 29, 2011 - Science
Kuhn's Structure of Scientific Revolutions (1962) has been enduringly influential in philosophy of science, challenging many common presuppositions about the nature of science and the growth of scientific knowledge. However, philosophers have misunderstood Kuhn's view, treating him as a relativist or social constructionist. In this book, Brad Wray argues that Kuhn provides a useful framework for developing an epistemology of science that takes account of the constructive role that social factors play in scientific inquiry. He examines the core concepts of Structure and explains the main characteristics of both Kuhn's evolutionary epistemology and his social epistemology, relating Structure to Kuhn's developed view presented in his later writings. The discussion includes analyses of the Copernican revolution in astronomy and the plate tectonics revolution in geology. The book will be useful for scholars working in science studies, sociologists and historians of science as well as philosophers of science.

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Introduction Kuhns insight
Part I Revolutions paradigms and incommensurability
Part II Kuhns evolutionary epistemology
Part III Kuhns social epistemology

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About the author (2011)

K. Brad Wray is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the State University of New York, Oswego. He has published extensively on the epistemology of science, Kuhn's philosophy of science and the anti-realism/realism debate. He was the guest editor of a special issue of the journal Episteme, on the theme of collective knowledge and science, and he is also the editor of an epistemology textbook, Knowledge and Inquiry (2002).

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