Timothy Shanahan
Loyola Marymount University
In The Advancement of Science (1993) Philip Kitcher develops what he calls the 'Compromise Model' of the closure of scientific debates. The model is designed to acknowledge significant elements from 'Rationalist' and 'Antirationalist' accounts of science, without succumbing to the one-sidedness of either. As part of an ambitious naturalistic account of scientific progress, Kitcher's model succeeds to the extent that transitions in the history of science satisfy its several conditions. I critically evaluate the Compromise Model by identifying its crucial assumptions and by attempting to apply the model to a major transition in the history of biology: the rejection of 'naive group selectionism' in the 1960s. I argue that the weaknesses and limitations of Kitcher's model exemplify general problems facing philosophical models of scientific change, and that recognition of these problems supports a more modest vision of the relationship between historical and philosophical accounts of science.
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DOI 10.1016/s0039-3681(96)00023-4
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References found in this work BETA

Conceptual Revolutions.Paul Thagard - 1992 - Princeton: Princeton University Press.
History of Science and Its Rational Reconstructions.Imre Lakatos - 1970 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1970:91-136.

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Citations of this work BETA

Methodological and Contextual Factors in the Dawkins/Gould Dispute Over Evolutionary Progress.Timothy Shanahan - 2001 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 32 (1):127-151.
Kitcher’s Modest Realism: The Reconceptualization of Scientific Objectivity.Antonio Dieguez - 2010 - Poznan Studies in the Philosophy of the Sciences and the Humanities 101 (1):141-169.

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