Kochiras, Hilarie. Locke’s Philosophy of Science
2009, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Summer 2014 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.)
Added by: Laura JimenezAbstract: This article examines questions connected with the two features of Locke's intellectual landscape that are most salient for understanding his philosophy of science: (1) the profound shift underway in disciplinary boundaries, in methodological approaches to understanding the natural world, and in conceptions of induction and scientific knowledge; and (2) the dominant scientific theory of his day, the corpuscular hypothesis. Following the introduction, section 2 addresses questions connected to changing conceptions of scientific knowledge. What does Locke take science (scientia) and scientific knowledge to be generally, why does he think that scientia in natural philosophy is beyond the reach of human beings, and what characterizes the conception of human knowledge in natural philosophy that he develops? Section 3 addresses the question provoked by Locke's apparently conflicting treatments of the corpuscular hypothesis. Does he accept or defend the corpuscular hypothesis? If not, what is its role in his thought, and what explains its close connection to key theses of the Essay? Since a scholarly debate has arisen about the status of the corpuscular hypothesis for Locke, Section 3 reviews some main positions in that debate. Section 4 considers the relationship between Locke's thought and that of a figure instrumental to the changing conceptions of scientific knowledge, Isaac NewtonExport citation in BibTeX formatExport text citationView this text on PhilPapersExport citation in Reference Manager formatExport citation in EndNote formatExport citation in Zotero format
Spencer, Quayshawn. Do Newton’s Rules of Reasoning Guarantee Truth … Must They?
2004, Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 35(4): 759-782.
Added by: Nick NovelliAbstract: Newton's Principia introduces four rules of reasoning for natural philosophy. Although useful, there is a concern about whether Newton's rules guarantee truth. After redirecting the discussion from truth to validity, I show that these rules are valid insofar as they fulfill Goodman's criteria for inductive rules and Newton's own methodological program of experimental philosophy; provided that cross-checks are used prior to applications of rule 4 and immediately after applications of rule 2 the following activities are pursued: (1) research addressing observations that systematically deviate from theoretical idealizations and (2) applications of theory that safeguard ongoing research from proceeding down a garden path.
Comment: A good examination of the relationship of scientific practices to truth, put in a historical context. Would be useful in a history and philosophy of science course.Export citation in BibTeX formatExport text citationView this text on PhilPapersExport citation in Reference Manager formatExport citation in EndNote formatExport citation in Zotero format
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Comment: Perfect as an introduction for undergraduates to Locke's philosophy of science. It is a really good overview article.