An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science


Reviews and critical notes

Midwest Book Review here: "An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science seeks to examine the very fundamental nature of science. In a way, it is the science of science. Filled with classical philosophical questions about science and how human ideas and thoughts concerning science have changed through the years, to the constant raging debates of today, An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science provides as much insight into science as philosophy can bring. An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science is a riveting and educational read, highly recommended."
 
Times Higher Education, 17th September 2009: "The author presents an introduction to modern issues and debates in the field, paying particular attention to the relationship between the advancement of science, policy making and public interest to the continuity between scientific research and other human activities."

Science & Education, 10th September 2011: "Perhaps the most unusual aspect of the book is the questions inserted throughout the text to prompt students to think through the issues at a deeper level."
 

Description

This is the first introduction to the philosophy of science with an entire chapter on the ethics of scientific research. Examples come from the full range of natural and the social sciences and no background in philosophy is presupposed.

The classic philosophical questions about methodology, progress, rationality and reality are all addressed. The book adopts a historically-informed perspective on the evolution of science and includes a thorough discussion of the ethical implications of the relationship between the advancement of science, policy making and public interest. Special attention is paid to the continuity between scientific research and other human activities.

The book is designed to help students think for themselves, and includes information tables and questions for further reflection to support all stages of the teaching and learning experience, from the comprehension of primary and other secondary texts to debate and essay writing. It also includes a thematic bibliography and a glossary of technical terms.
 

Contents

Introduction: What is Science?
Chapter 1: Demarcation
Chapter 2: Reasoning
Chapter 3: Knowledge
Chapter 4: Language and Reality
Chapter 5: Rationality
Chapter 6: Ethics
Conclusion: Science as an Activity
Glossary
Thematic Bibliography
Index
 
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introduction


Lisa Bortolotti (author)

Polity Press, October 2008

Portuguese translation rights sold to Gravida Publicacoes, Lisbon, in April 2013.