Science can't be free of philosophy any more than baseball can be free of physics." With this bold intellectual swing for the fences, philosopher Jeffrey L. Kasser launches an ambitious and exciting inquiry into what makes science science, using the tools of philosophy to ask:
* Why is science so successful? * Is there such a thing as the scientific method? * How do we distinguish science from pseudoscience? * Is science rational, cumulative, and progressive?
Focusing his investigation on the vigorous debate over the nature of science that unfolded during the past 100 years, Professor Kasser covers important philosophers such as Karl Popper, W. V. Quine, Thomas Kuhn, Paul Feyerabend, Imre Lakatos, Carl Hempel, Nelson Goodman, and Bas van Fraassen.
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Course Lecture Titles:
1. Science and Philosophy 2. Popper and the Problem of Demarcation 3. Further Thoughts on Demarcation 4. Einstein, Measurement, and Meaning 5. Classical Empiricism 6. Logical Positivism and Verifiability 7. Logical Positivism, Science, and Meaning 8. Holism 9. Discovery and Justification 10. Induction as Illegitimate 11. Some Solutions and a New Riddle 12. Instances and Consequences 13. Kuhn and the Challenge of History 14. Revolutions and Rationality 15. Assessment of Kuhn 16. For and Against Method 17. Sociology, Postmodernism, and Science Wars 18. (How) Does Science Explain? 19. Putting the Cause Back in "Because" 20. Probability, Pragmatics, and Unification 21. Laws and Regularities 22. Laws and Necessity 23. Reduction and Progress 24. Reduction and Physicalism 25. New Views of Meaning and Reference 26. Scientific Realism 27. Success, Experience, and Explanation 28. Realism and Naturalism 29. Values and Objectivity 30. Probability 31. Bayesianism 32. Problems with Bayesianism 33. Entropy and Explanation 34. Species and Reality 35. The Elimination of Persons? 36. Philosophy and Science