A new edition of a well-established core textbook," Philosophy of Science: A Contemporary Introduction i"ncorporates new material on the history of science, social epistemology and feminist philosophy of science, as well as additional information on key figures such as Popper and Darwin. Further reading suggestions have also been updated throughout. Rosenberg explores all the main themes in the philosophy of science, including the nature of causation, explanation, laws, theory, models, evidence, reductionism, probability, teleology, realism and instrumentalism. Each chapter contains an overview, a summary, study questions and annotated further reading. There is also a helpful glossary defining key words and concepts. The revisions make this book much clearer and user-friendly, making it a better fit with the companion anthology, "Philosophy of Science: Contemporary Readings". Not only will this text be of value to any student getting to grips with the nature, methods and justification of science, it will also appeal to non-mainstream philosophy of science courses such as those in women's studies departments.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgments Chapter 1: Why Philosophy of Science? 1. The relationship between science and philosophy 2. Scientific questions and questions about science 3. Modern science as philosophy 4. Understanding science and understanding Western civilization Summary, Study questions, Guide to literature Chapter 2: Explanation, Causation and Laws 1. Logical positivism sets the agenda 2. Defining scientific explanation 3. Why do laws explain? 4. Counter-examples and the pragmatics of explanation Summary, Study questions, Guide to literature Chapter 3: Scientific Explanation and its Discontents 1. Inexact laws and probabilities 2. Causation and teleolog 3. From intelligibility to necessity Summary, Study questions, Guide to literature Chapter 4: The Structure and Metaphysics of Scientific Theories 1. How do theories work? 2. The problem of theoretical terms and the things they name 3. Reduction, replacement and the progress of science 4. Theories and models 5. A case study: the theory of natural selection Summary, Study questions, Guide to literature Chapter 5: The Epistemology of Scientific Theorizing 1. Brief history of empiricism as science's epistemology 2. The epistemology of scientific testin 3. Induction as a pseudo-problem: Popper's Gambit 4. Statistics and probability to the rescue? 5. Underdetermination Summary, Study questions, Guide to literature Chapter 6: The Challenge of History and Post-Positivism 1. A place for history? 2. No place for first philosophy? 3. Are scientific research programs rational? Summary, Study questions, Guide to literature Chapter 7: The Contested Character of Science and the Fundamental Questions of Philosophy 1. From philosophy through history to postmodernism 2. Scientism, sexism and significant truths 3. Dealing with relativism: Could the earth really be flat? Summary, Study questions, Guide to literature Bibliography Index.
Alexander Rosenberg is Professor of Philosophy at Duke University, North Carolina, USA. His ten books in the philosophy of science include The Structure of Biological Science (1985) and Philosophy of Social Science (1995). He has been a Guggenheim Fellow, a Fellow of the American Council of Learned Societies and the National Science Foundation. In 1993 he won the Lakatos Prize in the Philosophy of Science.