Whys and Ways of Science: Introducing Philosophical and Sociological Theories of Science

Melbourne University Press (1992)


Whys and Ways of Science presents the issues, arguments and the theories that have attracted the greatest attention and which are covered in the greater majority of tertiary courses offered in philosophical and social studies of science. A primary aim of the book is to present a suitably broad picture of the spectrum of theories about science without sacrificing too much detail. About one-half of the book is devoted to the most influential philosophical theories of science and scientific change to emerge post-World War Two in Western countries, in particular the holistic theories of Thomas Kuhn, Imre Lakatos and Larry Laudan. The second half deals with socially-oriented theories of science such as Functionalist sociology of science; the Strong Programme in the Sociology of Scientific Knowledge; the Interests analysis of science, the theories of Paul Feyerabend and of Bruno Latour. The final chapter examines the question of whether the rationality of science can be sustained in the face of growing accounts of science as a purely social activity and presents an original model for theory choice in science.

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Peter J. Riggs
Australian National University

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Citations of this work

'Peer Review' Culture.Dr Malcolm Atkinson - 2001 - Science and Engineering Ethics 7 (2):193-204.
‘Peer Review’ Culture.Malcolm Atkinson - 2001 - Science and Engineering Ethics 7 (2):193-204.
Limits to Problem Solving in Science.Struan Jacobs - 2001 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 15 (3):231 – 242.

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