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    Metaphysics Of Science An Account Of Modern Science In Terms Of Principles, Laws.

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    内容提示: The Metaphysics of Science BOSTON STUDIES IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCEEditorsROBERT S. COHEN, Boston UniversityJÜRGEN RENN, Max-Planck-Institute for the History of ScienceKOSTAS GAVROGLU, University of AthensEditorial Advisory BoardTHOMAS F. GLICK, Boston UniversityADOLF GRÜNBAUM, University of PittsburghSYLVAN S. SCHWEBER, Brandeis UniversityJOHN J. STACHEL, Boston UniversityMARX W. WARTOFSKY†, (Editor 1960–1997)VOLUME 173 CRAIG DILWORTHDepartment ofPhilosophy, Uppsala UniversityTHE METAPHYSICSOF ...

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    The Metaphysics of Science BOSTON STUDIES IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCEEditorsROBERT S. COHEN, Boston UniversityJÜRGEN RENN, Max-Planck-Institute for the History of ScienceKOSTAS GAVROGLU, University of AthensEditorial Advisory BoardTHOMAS F. GLICK, Boston UniversityADOLF GRÜNBAUM, University of PittsburghSYLVAN S. SCHWEBER, Brandeis UniversityJOHN J. STACHEL, Boston UniversityMARX W. WARTOFSKY†, (Editor 1960–1997)VOLUME 173 CRAIG DILWORTHDepartment ofPhilosophy, Uppsala UniversityTHE METAPHYSICSOF SCIENCEAn Account ofModern Sciencein terms ofPrinciples, Laws and TheoriesSECOND EDITION A C.I.P. Catalogue record for this book is available from the Library of Congress.ISBN-10 1-4020-3837-2 (HB)ISBN-13 978-1-4020-3837-2 (HB)ISBN-10 1-4020-3838-0 (e-book)ISBN-13 978-1-4020-3838-9 (e-book)Published by Springer,P.O. Box 17, 3300 AA Dordrecht, The Netherlands.www.springer.comPrinted on acid-f ree paperAll Rights Reserved© 2006 SpringerNo part of this work may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmittedin any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, microfilming, recordingor otherwise, without written permission from the Publisher, with the exceptionof any material supplied specifically for the purpose of being enteredand executed on a computer system, for exclusive use by the purchaser of the work.Printed in the Netherlands. CONTENTSPREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITIONxiPREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITIONxiiiINTRODUCTION11. EMPIRICISM VS. REALISM – THE PERENNIALDEBATE IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCEComte, Whewell, Mill, Mach, Boltzmann, Poincar´ e,Duhem, Campbell, Hempel, Harr´ e, van Fraassen,Laudan, Cartwright, Hacking, Putnam92. FUNDAMENTAL AND REFINED PRINCIPLES:THE CORE OF MODERN SCIENCE1. Three Principles Central to Modern Science2. Refinements ofthe Principles in Science3. Four Ways Principles Function with Respectto Science4. On the Epistemological Status ofthe PrinciplesofScience49536265713. EMPIRICAL LAWS: THE SUPERVENTIONOF EXPERIENCE1. The Uniformity Principle and Empirical Laws2. The Substance Principle and Empirical Systems3. Continuity4. Necessity and Universality5. Discovery, Prediction and Technology6. The Supervention ofExperience7. Empirical Laws Require Explanation7374798182838594 viCONTENTS4. SCIENTIFIC THEORIES: CLOSING THE CIRCLE1. Theoretical Reduction and the Closing ofthe Circle2. The Substance Principle and Theoretical Ontologies3. The Causality Principle and Causal Mechanisms4. The Hypothetical Aspect ofTheories5. Explanation, Understanding and the LimitsofIntelligibility959697991021045. THE PRINCIPLE-THEORY-LAW MODELOF SCIENTIFIC EXPLANATION1. Theoretical Models, Source-Analoguesand Abstraction2. The Substantial, Formal and Causal Aspectsofa Theoretical Model3. Theoretical Systems and the DerivationofEmpirical Laws4. Theoretical Models Can Suggest ExperimentsBut Do Not Determine Their Results5. The Nominal vs. the Real Aspect ofthe Subject6. Idealisation7. Explanation vs. Prediction1091091131151201221231276. THE SOCIAL SCIENCES: A CONSIDERATIONOF ECONOMICS1. The Principles ofRationality and Equilibrium2. The Empirical Facts ofEconomics3. Economic Models Are Theories4. The Substantial, Causal and Formal AspectsofEconomic Models5. Intentional Constructs and Empathetic Understanding6. The Source and Subject ofEconomic Models7. Abstraction and Idealisation130131134136138140143145 CONTENTSvii7. NATURAL KINDS1. What Are Natural Kinds for Modern Science?2. Nominal and Real Essences: Key to the UnderstandingofNatural Kinds3. Natural Kinds in Biology4. On Identifying Natural Kinds5. Sets, Classes, Individuals and Natural Kinds6. On Difference ofLevel and the Epistemological StatusofAttributions ofNominal and Real Essence1481481511531571631668. PROBABILITY AND CONFIRMATION1. General Considerations Regarding Probability2. Two Senses ofthe Word “Confirm”3. Evidential Basis vs. Subject-Matter4. Methodological Grounds and Inductive Probability5. Subjective Probability and the Implicationsofa Probability Claim6. Knowledge-Relativity and the PropensityInterpretation7. Nominal vs. Real Probability Determinations8. Methodological Requirements ofProbabilityLocutions9. On the Acceptability ofScientific Theories10. On the Confirmation ofExperimental Laws11. On the Applicability ofScientific Principles1701701711721731741751761781791801819. EMPIRICISM VS. REALISM REVISITED1. The Historical Debate2. The Supervention ofExperience3. Ontology vs. Epistemology4. Understanding vs. Knowledge183183186188191 viiiCONTENTS10. MODERN SCIENCE AND THE FUTURE1. A Particular Enterprise Emanatingfrom Particular Principles2. The Revolution from Mythopoeic Thought3. Three Streams in Greek Thought4. Christianity, Platonism, Aristotelianismand the Scientific Revolution5. Intellectual and Practical Successes and Problems6. What Next?193193194196198203206APPENDICESI. THE VICIOUS CIRCLE PRINCIPLEOF HUMAN DEVELOPMENT1. The Vicious Circle Principle2. Application and Corroboration3. Conclusion209210221240II. THE DEMARCATION OF MODERN SCIENCEFROM MAGIC, ASTROLOGY, CHINESE MEDICINEAND PARAPSYCHOLOGY1. Magic2. Astrology3. Chinese Medicine4. Parapsychology5. Metaphysics and Worldviews6. Historical Development ofthe Non-Physical7. Modern Science and the Spirit8. The Physical vs. the Spiritual9. Conclusion241242248251253260261265266269III. REPLY TO CRITICISM1. The Deductive Model2. The Perspectivist Conception270272274 CONTENTSix3. Principles4. Realism vs. Empiricism5. Understanding vs. Knowledge6. The PTL Model ofScientific Explanation7. Quantum Mechanics8. Conclusion280287289290293298REFERENCES300INDEX319 PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITIONThe roots of this work lie in my earlier book, Scientific Progress,whichfirstappearedin1981. Oneofitstopics, thedistinctionbetweenscientific laws and theories, is there treated with reference to thesame distinction as drawn by N. R. Campbell in his Physics: TheElements. Shortly after completing Scientific Progress, I read RomHarr´ e’s The Principles ofScientific Thinking, in which the conceptof theory is even more clearly delineated than in Campbell, beingdirectly connected to the notion ofa model – as it was in my book.In subsequent considerations regarding science, Harr´ e’s work thusbecame my main source ofinspiration with regard to theories, whileCampbell’s remained my main source with respect to empirical laws.Around the same time I also read William Whewell’s Philosophyofthe Inductive Sciences. In this work, Whewell depicts principlesas playing a central role in the formation of science, and conceivesof them in much the same way as Kant conceives of fundamentalsynthetic apriori judgements. The idea that science shouldhave prin-ciples as a basic element immediately made sense to me, and fromthat time I have thought of science in terms of laws, theories andprinciples.Two questions then presented themselves, namely precisely howlaws and theories are related to principles, and what the fundamentalor core principles ofmodern science actually are. Though an answerto these questions hadalready been put forwardby Whewell, his con-ceptionwas inaparticularrespect too rigid, andfurthermore lackedacertain clarity and simplicity. It has been mainly through attempts toovercome these shortcomings that the present work has taken form.Here, modern science is conceived as an enterprise centred on threeparticular principles in such a way that it includes as integral aspectsboth empirical laws and abstract theories.After already having become clear as to the basic structure ofthis work, I read F. S. C. Northrop’s Science and First Principles,in which Greek scientific-philosophical thought is conceived as con-sisting ofthree main streams, with modern science being a develop- xiiPREFACE TO FIRST EDITIONment ofone ofthem in particular. Northrop’s historical view not onlyfit well with my philosophical conception, but was also in keepingwith my own thoughts on these matters.SothepresentworkhasbeeninfluencedmainlybyWhewell,Camp-bell andHarr´ e, andfromone point ofview maybe seen as asynthesisof certain of their central ideas in such a way as is in keeping withthe historical account ofNorthrop; from another point ofview it maybe seen as a development ofChapter 10 and Appendices I and IV ofthe latest edition of Scientific Progress. It is a work, like ScientificProgress, fundamentally antithetical to the logico-linguistic traditionof twentieth-century analytic philosophy, and moreover one whichconstitutes an instance ofthe application ofa metaphysical approachin the philosophy ofscience.Anumberofpeople have helpedme withcomments onearlierpub-lications and on the present text at various ofits stages, and to all ofthem I extend my thanks. They include Evandro Agazzi, John Black-more, RobertS. Cohen, YvesGingras, RomHarr´ eandPeterManicas.Peter S¨ oderbaum and Stig Wand´ en have commented on Chapter 6, ashas RogerPyddoke, withwhomI have previouslyworkedonthe topicofthat chapter. Comments on Chapter 7 have been afforded by PaulDumouchel and Jaap van Brakel. I would also like to thank JamesCrompton,IngvarJohanssonandGiovanniSommarugaforcommentsonthe whole ofthe bookinmanuscript. Veryspecial thanks are due toLouk Fleischhacker, who has discussed the subject ofthe book withme in detail, and has been a source ofencouragement throughout itspreparation. Financial support for research has been provided by theSwedishCouncilforResearchinthe Humanities andSocialSciences.STOCKHOLMMay 1995C. D. PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITIONApartfromtypographicalimprovements, the additionofthe oddfoot-note, and the emendation ofa small part ofthe text, this edition hasbeen supplemented with three appendices. The first ofthese providesjustification for claims made at the end ofChapter 10 regarding thefuture ofhumankind. In this appendix, a theory ofhuman develop-mentis presentedbasedonwhatis termedthevicious circleprinciple.According to the theory, the key difference between the developmentofhumans and other animals lies in our ability to generate new tech-nology. This ability has meant that on many occasions we have beenable to solve problems of need by technological means, which hasled to a growth in the human population, which in turn has broughtus back to a situation ofneed, which we often once again succeed inovercoming through technological innovation. The vicious aspect ofthe circle consists in its leading to a dead end when either resourcesno longer exist that are amenable to technological innovation, or thewaste the ever-increasing use oftechnology gives rise to makes fur-ther development impossible.The second appendix is an analysis ofparticular enterprises whichwe intuitively take to be non-scientific against the background oftheprinciples ofmodern science as they are presented in this book. Thisanalysis should perform either or both of two tasks, namely that ofindicating the extent to which the various subjects treated are or arenot scientific, and/or that of supporting the approach of the presentwork by showing how its handling ofthis question is in keeping withour intuitions.The third appendix is a comprehensive and detailed reply to crit-icisms made of this book and of later editions of my other majorwork in the philosophy of science, Scientific Progress. In it I showthat my critics have been unable to move beyond an essentially logi- xivPREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITIONcal-empiricist conception of science – to which alternative concep-tions are provided in both books – which has prevented them fromproperly appreciating the views being advanced in either ofthem.I would like to thank Jan Faye for comments on Appendix II, andLouk Fleishhacker for comments on all three appendices.STOCKHOLMAugust 2005C. D. INTRODUCTIONThis book, in its attempt to depict the metaphysics of science, hasa form which differs in a number of ways from that of most othercontributions to the philosophy ofscience. Part ofthis difference isalreadyimpliedinthe book’s title, forfewmodernwriters wouldwantto say that science has any metaphysics at all. What does it mean tosay that science has a metaphysics?Metaphysics itselfmay be thought ofas having two main aspectswhich, following Kant, we shall call the transcendent and the tran-scendental. Both of these notions are important for the message ofthe present work. The transcendental, as it is to be understood here,maybe seen as consisting ofaperson’s most fundamental convictionsor beliefs about the nature ofreality. These are beliefs – such as, forexample, beliefin the existence ofGod – which affect the whole ofa person’s conception of reality, and which, psychologically speak-ing, are the most difficult to give up. Furthermore, they are beliefsofwhich a person may not be conscious. In distinction from Kant’sview, however, we do not take the transcendental to be independentof experience; rather, while the beliefs that compose it are not justgeneralisationsofexperience, theyareneverthelessarrivedatthroughsomecombinationofexperienceandthought. Whatisimportanthow-ever is that once arrived at, they constitute the very preconditions forthe way one afterwards experiences the world. And, as follows fromthis, the transcendental need not take a predetermined form, as it didfor Kant. As conceived by him, the very constitution ofhumans wassuch that they experience nature in terms of, for example, cause andeffect. Here, the transcendental is open to reform – in terms of ourexample, though one’s beliefin God may be deep, it may come to begiven up.As regards science then, the transcendental may be seen as con-cerning the most fundamental beliefs scientists as a group have re-garding the nature of reality, as these beliefs are manifest in theirscientific endeavours. Or, moving from psychology to epistemology,we should say that the transcendental for science consists of the 2INTRODUCTIONmostfundamentalpresuppositionsofscience. Inbeingtranscendentalwith respect to science they cannot have been arrived at through thepursuit of science, but must be, in a definite sense, pre-scientific,or metascientific. And, as in the example given above, they can berevised or abandoned in favour of alternatives. Thus the idea thatscience has transcendental presuppositions does not conflict with theidea that science is a dynamic, evolving enterprise, but rather directsthe philosopher’s attention to analysing the dynamics and evolutionofscience in terms ofchanges in its presuppositions. These changesmay be more or less drastic, which can lead us to say that changes inscience, orscientific revolutions, are more orless total. Andatthe endofthe daywe maystillfindthatcertainbasic presuppositions –orcoreprinciples –have continuedto functionas regulative ideas forsciencethroughout its history, and furthermore that this transcendental heartofscience is what makes science what it is and not another thing. Itis just this transcendental aspect of science, and how it affects theenterprise of science as a whole, that is focussed on in the presentwork.Theotheraspectofmetaphysicsisthetranscendent, which, broadlyspeaking, is that which lies beyond the limit of some generally ac-cessible realm, whether it be, for example, experience, knowledge,understanding, language, or thought. Ofimmediate relevance for thestudy of science is the idea of something’s lying beyond the limitof knowledge, where knowledge is understood as empirical knowl-edge. It is largely with regard to the issue ofwhether science shouldbe restricted in its investigations to what can be empirically known,or whether it should also delve into the transcendent realm of the-oretical entities, that the long-standing battle in the philosophy ofscience between empiricists and realists has been waged (whereasthe issue concerning the transcendental may be seen as the focalpoint of the debate between empiricists and rationalists). Our dif-ference from Kant with regard to the transcendent, apart from hisnot considering its possible application as limiting realms other thanthat ofempirical knowledge, is that what is transcendent at one pointin time need not remain so – what is at one time hypothetical maybecome factual. So we have more of a pragmatic view of the tran-scendent than does Kant, at least as regards its application to science.And further, on our notion there are levels of transcendence, such INTRODUCTION3that, forexample, physical atoms maybe viewedas transcendentwithrespect to particular empirical laws concerning gases, while quarksand leptons may be considered transcendent with respect to physicalatoms. Itmayherebenotedthat, properlyunderstood, therealistisnotnecessarily advocating that one can have knowledge ofany particulartranscendent realm, but that it is through theorising about the natureofsuch a realm and its relation to the non-transcendent or empiricalthat the latter can be made intelligible. This issue is the topic ofthefirst chapterofthe book, andconstitutes a theme throughout the workwhich is rounded offin the penultimate chapter.So what is here meant by saying that science has a metaphysicsis that it has a transcendental aspect, the question ofwhether it alsohas or ought to have a transcendent aspect being one investigatedin the book against the background of the presupposition that thetranscendental aspect has the particular form specified in Chapter 2.A second way in which this book differs from most other contri-butions to the philosophy ofscience is in its emphasis on ‘paradigm-thinking.’ There are various ways in which the relation between thetranscendental and science may be conceived, and the way in whichit is conceived here is perhaps novel. During the nineteenth cen-tury it was common among philosophers and scientists to think interms of the principles of science, but for them the principles wereto constitute the basis ofscience, whereas here principles are to con-stitute the core of science – a distinction to which we shall returndirectly. Furthermore, for most thinkers at that time, and even to-day, science was conceived of as a monolithic enterprise providingthe one and only sure route to truth. Here, on the other hand, as isin keeping with the view that the transcendental can take differentforms, science is conceivedas one particularepistemological activitywhich may be compared with others. Moreover, what is intended byscience in the present work is restricted to what is normally consid-ered modern science, i.e. science since the time of Galileo and theScientific Revolution. Thus modern science can be compared withother ostensible means of gaining knowledge or understanding ofreality – such as Aristotelian science, or magic – such a comparisonto be made first in terms ofsimilarities and differences in their coreprinciples. 4INTRODUCTIONWhat is meant by saying that particular principles constitute thecore rather than the basis ofscience is that they are not general self-evident truths from which particular empirical truths can be formallydeduced, but are rather ideal conceptions ofreality which guide sci-entists’ investigation of actual reality. From this perspective, whatmakes a particular activity scientific is not that the reality it uncov-ers meets the ideal, but that its deviation from the ideal is alwayssomething to be accounted for. In this way transcendental principlesconstitute paradigms in much the same sense as this term is intendedbyKuhn(andWittgenstein), itbeingunderstoodhoweverthattheyareconceptual and ontological rather than concrete and methodologicalin nature. Thus, as distinct from Kuhn’s view, principles constitute aparadigm for modern science in that they are mental constructs de-picting, in broad outline, an ideal reality, rather than being instancesofscientific practice embodying an ideal method. Similarly to Kuhn’sview, on the other hand, an enterprise focussed on a particular onto-logical paradigm can go through a number of historical phases. Onthe present account, the paradigm ofmodern science as a whole hadits golden period during the nineteenth century – a period that hasbeen termed‘the age ofscience’ –while during the twentieth centurygreaterdifficultyhas beenexperiencedinthe attemptto assimilate theresults ofscientific enquiry to its transcendental ideal, particularly inits core discipline ofphysics.Speaking of the ‘core discipline of physics’ brings us to anothersense in which transcendental principles constitute the ontologicalparadigm ofmodern science. Thus, just as science had an historicalperiod during which the reality it revealed was most similar to theideal depicted in the principles, so too can we say that various scien-tific disciplines lie closer or further from the transcendental core ofscience depending on how similar the reality they uncover is to thereality of the principles. Due to the nature of the principles of sci-ence on the one hand, and reality on the other, the greatest success inapplying the principles has been had in physics and chemistry, whilebiology lies further from the core, and the social sciences furtherstill.Another way that paradigm-thinking enters the present work is inthe claim that this sort of thinking actually occurs in science. Thuson the present view both scientific theories and the expressions of INTRODUCTION5empirical laws constitute in science itselfintellectual paradigms in-tendedtocapturetheessenceofparticularaspectsofreality; andtheseessences are not necessary or sufficient conditions that reality mustmeet in order for the relevant laws or theories to be applicable, butidealised states ofaffairs which as a matter offact might never havereal correlates. One area in which this paradigm-thinking is particu-larly clearly manifest is in the treatment ofnatural kinds in biology(as examinedin Chapter7), where difference ofnatural kindis not anall-or-nothing affair. In this context, paradigm-thinking involves thetaking ofcertain real things or intellectual constructs as each consti-tuting the ideal ofa particular type, such that individual entities areseen as gravitating more or less to one paradigm or another depend-ing on their characteristics; in this way such an entity may thus beconsidered to be ofsome particular type, or perhaps to constitute aborderline case between types.The use of paradigm-thinking in the present work does not stopthere however, but lies in the background throughout. Thus, whenin the book we speak ofthe function oftheories as being to providecausal explanations oflaws, we mean that this is their paradigmaticfunction, which does not exclude their being used, for example, toprovide information about a deeper-lying reality as such; or when wesay that the aim ofthe empirical aspect ofscience is the discovery ofempiricallaws,wemeanthisisitsparadigmaticaim,anddonotintendto deny that the empirical aspect ofscience may also involve e.g. thedetermination ofthe existence ofparticular entities. The conceptionofscience presented here is, it is hoped, a coherent whole in whichvarious concepts occupy particular nodal points, thereby making italso a system. In this system these concepts, the most important ofwhich are principles, laws and theories, function at these nodes asconceptual paradigms.So the notions ofprinciples, laws and theories constitute the nodalor paradigm concepts in terms ofwhich the present account of sci-ence is conducted. This account, in broad outline, runs as follows.Modern science, as presented in Chapter 2, is a particular epistemo-logical enterprise which consists in the application of, and therebyobtains its nature from, particular fundamental metaphysical princi-ples. In order to find clear application to reality, these fundamentalprinciples are refined in various ways, giving rise to different group- 6INTRODUCTIONingsofwhatmaybetermedrefinedprinciples, eachgroupingdefininga different science or scientific discipline. Where the fundamentalprinciples are normally implicit in the doing ofscience, the refinedprinciples are explicit.The assumptionthatrealityhas the basic nature depictedbythe im-plicitfundamental principles leads to its being investigatedaccordingto a particular method – the experimental method – resulting in thediscoveryofempiricallaws (the topic ofChapter3). There is no guar-antee howeverthatthe laws discoveredbyemployingthis methodwillbe in keeping with the fundamental principles as a whole, nor, moreparticularly, with the refined principles of the science or scientificdiscipline in question. In order to show that and how they are so,one or more depictions ofthe reality being investigated is advanced,depictions each ofwhich is more detailed than that provided by therefined principles.Such depictions are ofhypothetical realities which on the one handnaturally give rise to the empirical laws that are ofinterest, while atthe same time are constrained by limits set by the refined principles.This constraint consists in the depicted realities’ not transgressingthe refined principles, as well as in the depictions’ employing onlyconcepts taken from them. Such ontological depictions are theorieswhich, if they achieve their aim, may be said to have scientificallyexplainedthe laws inquestionbyshowingthemto be butanempiricalmanifestation of the principles underlying the science in question(the topic of Chapter 4). In this way, where empirical laws providescientific knowledge, theories, by linking the laws to the principles,provide scientific understanding.This, then, is the central message ofthis book. Following its pre-sentation in Chapters 2 to 4, it is employed in various ways. First, inChapter 5, it provides the structure for a model of scientific expla-nation. This model is the Principle-Theory-Law (PTL) model, whichinvolves a further development ofthe law/theory distinction in intro-ducing notions ofthe nominal vs. the real aspects ofthe domain ofa theory. While it is intended that this model capture the essence ofexplanation in modern science, it is possible that it also has appli-cation outside this realm. In any case, it is applied in Chapter 6 toa case study taken from modern microeconomics, where it appearsto fit rather well. There, according to the core ideas ofthe book, the INTRODUCTION7key difference between mainstream economics and the natural sci-ences, apart from their subject-matter, lies in their having differentconceptions ofcausality.Against the background of one of the fundamental principles ofscience presented in Chapter 2, the distinction between the nominaland the real developed in the PTL model is presented in Chapter 7 asthe key to understanding the modern-scientific conception ofnaturalkinds. There it is suggested that for modern science natural kinds areto be conceived ofas having both nominal and real essences, where areal essence can be a nominal essence relative to some even deeper-lyingrealessence. Thisnotionofdifferenceoflevel, mentionedabovewith regard to the transcendent, stems from the relativisation ofthelaw/theorydistinction; itis also akeyaspectofthe discussionofprob-ability in Chapter 8. In that discussion, for which another fundamen-tal principle is central, the distinction is made between nominal andreal probability determinations, where nominal probability is basedon empirical samples while real probability is based on ontologicaltheories.In Chapter 9, as mentioned, the realist/empiricist discussion isbrought to a close; and the distinctions between epistemology andontology, and between knowledge and understanding, are discussed.In the final chapter, Chapter 10, the modern-scientific worldviewis compared with other historical worldviews, and the question israised whether for both epistemological and pragmatic reasons itmaybe time to change to some fundamentallydifferentepistemology,whether or not the name “science” be applied to it.As is clear from the above, this work is one in the philosophy ofscience as distinct from epistemology. We are here focusing on thenature ofmodern science, and not on how best to obtain knowledgeof reality in some wider context. Though basic epistemological is-sues are broached in Chapter 3, this is done only with the aim ofdetermining the fundamental conception of knowledge acquisitionofmodern science. This marks a third difference between this workand most other contributions to the philosophy of science. In themit is implicitly assumed that modern science constitutes the best wayofobtaining knowledge about reality, the question being what is thebest way to conduct science. In other words there is an implicit faiththat humankind has been constantly moving forward along the one 8INTRODUCTIONroad to Truth, that road being Science, without consideration be-ing given to the thought that modern science might appear just aswrongheaded in the future as alternative forms of science do now.The interest ofthe present volume, on the other hand, is primarily inclarifying the nature ofscience, though questions as to its value aretaken up in the final chapter.As is implied in that chapter, that the nature ofmodern science beclarified is becoming a pressing need in an age where science, whilehelping provide most people in industrialised nations with a highstandardofliving, has at the same time been an essential factor in thedevelopment of nuclear and chemical weapons, and a contributingfactor to the spread of pollutants threatening future human life onearth. In spite ofthese trends, science shows signs ofbecoming thefirst world-wide religion. The scientific enterprise is in serious needofdemystification.The presentworkis intendedto revealthe nature ofmodernscienceas an intellectual enterprise. Ifsuccessful, it should thereby explainsuchcentral aspects ofmodernscience as the wayinwhichthe Scien-tific Revolution ofthe seventeenth century actually was a revolutionwith respect to preceding epistemological approaches. Similarly, itshould explain both why the nineteenth century may be consideredthe golden age ofscience, as well as why physics and chemistry lie atthecoreoftheenterprisewhilethesocialsciencescontinuetostruggleto obtain scientific status. It should also afford a means ofdemarcat-ing science from non-science (in terms of paradigms), and explainthe nature ofscientific revolutions, whether major or minor. Further-more, the present work should clarify the nature ofthe foundationalproblems in physics today, as well as the nature ofsuch activities asscientific explanation and classification.We begin our excursion into the metaphysics ofscience by exam-ining the historical debate regarding the role of the transcendent inscience, as manifestinthe empiricism/realismissue inthe philosophyofscience. CHAPTER 1EMPIRICISM VS. REALISM –THE PERENNIAL DEBATEIN THE PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCEThe issue over empiricism and realism, presently the focus ofmuchdiscussion in the philosophy ofscience, is but the manifestation ofanage-old perplexity. The perplexity is over the relation between one’sexperiences, and the world, or between phenomena and reality.Now of course phenomena may themselves be considered real,andthe realm they constitute be considereda world. But such a worlddiffers from the reality with which it is being contrasted here by thefact that the latter is conceived to be the only one of its kind, toexist independently of being experienced, and to be common to usall.At one time or another virtually every conceivable line has beentaken on the issue, from the view that there is no reality other thanphenomena, to the view that reality, while different from phenomena,alone causes and is perfectly represented by them. The interest ofthepresent chapter will be in presenting some ofthe more conspicuousforms the issue has taken in the philosophy ofscience since the timethe subject began as a relatively autonomous discipline, and in crit-ically appraising some of the more recent contributions against thebackground ofthe debate as a whole.Empiricism in the philosophy ofscience is, broadly speaking, theview that scientific investigation be confined to phenomena and theirformal relations, while realism is the view that it is also the taskof science to investigate the causes of such phenomena and rela-tions, conceived as emanating from the real world.1Auguste Comte1This is the conception of realism involved in the historical debate. As will be ar-gued below, the modern conception of ‘scientific realism,’ according to which theo-ries are statements and the aim of science is to produce theories ever closer to thetruth, is essentially an empiricist conception, and fails to come to grips with the 10CHAPTER 1(1798–1857) strongly advocates a variant of the empiricist view,which, following Saint-Simon, he terms positivism:Our study ofnature is restricted to the analysis ofphenom...

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