April 2012

Stephen Turner describes “The Social Study of Science before Kuhn”

Thomas Kuhn’s Structure of Scientific Revolutions — in many ways established the modern field of science studies. Stephen Turner provides a brief, socioligist’s version of the lead-up to Kuhn’s seminal book. Here’s a quick summary of his key points: Bacon and Comte Turner begins with Francis Bacon’s “The New Atlantis” (1627). Although Bacon’s work was more political […]

Causation, faith, and intelligent design

There is a philosophical thesis (attributed jointly to Pierre Duhem and Willard Quine) that, when simplified, explains how a given set of facts can produce more than one apparently true conclusion: essentially, different background assumptions lead to different conclusions. A related concept is known as underdetermination: that a given set of evidence can be explained by more than one–potentially conflicting–theory.