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Scientific Perspectivism
Author: Ronald N. Giere

ISBN: 9780226292137
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 160
Published: 31 May 2010
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 1.3
Description:


Many people assume that the claims of scientists are objective truths. But historians, sociologists, and philosophers of science have long argued that scientific claims reflect the particular historical, cultural, and social context in which those claims were made. The nature of scientific knowledge is not absolute because it is influenced by the practice and perspective of human agents.Scientific Perspectivism argues that the acts of observing and theorizing are both perspectival, and this nature makes scientific knowledge contingent, as Thomas Kuhn theorized forty years ago.

Using the example of color vision in humans to illustrate how his theory of "perspectivism" works, Ronald N. Giere argues that colors do not actually exist in objects; rather, color is the result of an interaction between aspects of the world and the human visual system. Giere extends this argument into a general interpretation of human perception and, more controversially, to scientific observation, conjecturing that the output of scientific instruments is perspectival. Furthermore, complex scientific principles-such as Maxwell's equations de...

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