Structuralism and reference

Daniel Rothschild
University College London
The argument is directed at the view that scientific knowledge is just knowledge of the structure of the natural world and not knowledge of its intrinsic nature. The origin of the view is the post-Galilean conception of modern science, which views science as yielding a picture of nature stripped of all color, explaining all physical processes purely in terms of space-time, particles, fields, forces and the like, the intrinsic natures of which are never themselves analyzed. It is safe to say that this conception of the limits of scientific knowledge, i.e. of its purely mathematical and structural character, is still a dominant one for both philosophers and scientists.
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