Philosophy of Science: Very Short Introduction

Author: Samir Okasha

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0191062790

Category: Science

Page: 160

View: 4410

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How much faith should we place in what scientists tell us? Is it possible for scientific knowledge to be fully 'objective'? What, really, can be defined as science? In the second edition of this Very Short Introduction, Samir Okasha explores the main themes and theories of contemporary philosophy of science, and investigates fascinating, challenging questions such as these. Starting at the very beginning, with a concise overview of the history of science, Okasha examines the nature of fundamental practices such as reasoning, causation, and explanation. Looking at scientific revolutions and the issue of scientific change, he asks whether there is a discernible pattern to the way scientific ideas change over time, and discusses realist versus anti-realist attitudes towards science. He finishes by considering science today, and the social and ethical philosophical questions surrounding modern science. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Philosophy of Science

A Very Short Introduction

Author: Samir Okasha

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0198745583

Category: Philosophy

Page: 140

View: 2660

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How much faith should we place in what scientists tell us? Is it possible for scientific knowledge to be fully "objective?" What, really, can be defined as science? In the second edition of this Very Short Introduction, Samir Okasha explores the main themes and theories of contemporary philosophy of science, and investigates fascinating, challenging questions such as these. Starting at the very beginning, with a concise overview of the history of science, Okasha examines the nature of fundamental practices such as reasoning, causation, and explanation. Looking at scientific revolutions and the issue of scientific change, he asks whether there is a discernible pattern to the way scientific ideas change over time, and discusses realist versus anti-realist attitudes towards science. He finishes by considering science today, and the social and ethical philosophical questions surrounding modern science. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Science and Religion: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Thomas Dixon

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199295514

Category: History

Page: 150

View: 6279

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The debate between science and religion is never out of the news: emotions run high, fuelled by polemical bestsellers like iThe God Delusion/i and, at the other end of the spectrum, high-profile campaigns to teach 'Intelligent Design' in schools. Yet there is much more to the debate than the clash of these extremes. As Thomas Dixon shows in this balanced and thought-provoking introduction, a whole range of views, subtle arguments, and fascinating perspectives can be taken on this complex and centuries-old subject. He explores not only the key philosophical questions that underlie the debate, but also highlights the social, political, and ethical contexts that have made 'science and religion' such a fraught and interesting topic in the modern world. Along the way, he examines landmark historical episodes such as the Galileo affair, Charles Darwin's own religious and scientific odyssey, the Scopes 'Monkey Trial' in Tennessee in 1925, and the Dover Area School Board case of 2005, and includes perspectives from non-Christian religions and examples from across the physical, biological, and social sciences.

Metaphysics: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Stephen Mumford

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191640263

Category: Philosophy

Page: 128

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Metaphysics is one of the traditional four main branches of philosophy, alongside ethics, logic and epistemology. It is also an area that continues to attract and hold a fascination for many people yet it is associated with being complex and abstract. For some it is associated with the mystical or religious. For others it is known through the metaphysical poets who talk of love and spirituality. This Very Short Introduction goes right to the heart of the matter, getting to the basic and most important questions of metaphysical thought in order to understand the theory: What are objects? Do colours and shapes have some form of existence? What is it for one thing to cause another rather than just being associated with it? What is possible? Does time pass? By using these questions to initiate thought about the basic issues around substance, properties, changes, causes, possibilities, time, personal identity, nothingness and emergentism, Stephen Mumford provides a clear and simple path through this analytical tradition at the core of philosophical thought. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Philosophy of Law: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Raymond Wacks

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191510637

Category: Law

Page: 152

View: 4502

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The concept of law lies at the heart of our social and political life. Legal philosophy, or jurisprudence, explores the notion of law and its role in society, illuminating its meaning and its relation to the universal questions of justice, rights, and morality. In this Very Short Introduction Raymond Wacks analyses the nature and purpose of the legal system, and the practice by courts, lawyers, and judges. Wacks reveals the intriguing and challenging nature of legal philosophy with clarity and enthusiasm, providing an enlightening guide to the central questions of legal theory. In this revised edition Wacks makes a number of updates including new material on legal realism, changes to the approach to the analysis of law and legal theory, and updates to historical and anthropological jurisprudence. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science

Author: Kent W. Staley

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 0521112494

Category: Science

Page: 300

View: 7616

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This book explores central philosophical concepts, issues, and debates in the philosophy of science, both historical and contemporary.

Worldviews

An Introduction to the History and Philosophy of Science

Author: Richard DeWitt

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 144439276X

Category: Science

Page: 392

View: 1932

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Updated throughout and with three entirely new chapters, Worldviews: An Introduction to the History and Philosophy of Science, Second Edition furthers its reputation as the definitive introductory text on the historical developments and philosophical issues that inform our scientific view of the world around us. Represents an innovative introduction to the history and philosophy of science, designed especially for those coming to the subject for the first time Updated new edition features the addition of chapters focusing on scientific laws, evolutionary theory, and implications of evolution Covers the key historical developments and philosophical themes that have impacted our scientific view of the world around us Analyzes the transitions from the Aristotelian worldview to the Newtonian worldview to a new and currently developing worldview Explores challenges to the Western scientific worldview brought on by recent discoveries

Theory and Reality

An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science

Author: Peter Godfrey-Smith

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 9780226300610

Category: Science

Page: 288

View: 9648

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How does science work? Does it tell us what the world is "really" like? What makes it different from other ways of understanding the universe? In Theory and Reality, Peter Godfrey-Smith addresses these questions by taking the reader on a grand tour of one hundred years of debate about science. The result is a completely accessible introduction to the main themes of the philosophy of science. Intended for undergraduates and general readers with no prior background in philosophy, Theory and Reality covers logical positivism; the problems of induction and confirmation; Karl Popper's theory of science; Thomas Kuhn and "scientific revolutions"; the views of Imre Lakatos, Larry Laudan, and Paul Feyerabend; and challenges to the field from sociology of science, feminism, and science studies. The book then looks in more detail at some specific problems and theories, including scientific realism, the theory-ladeness of observation, scientific explanation, and Bayesianism. Finally, Godfrey-Smith defends a form of philosophical naturalism as the best way to solve the main problems in the field. Throughout the text he points out connections between philosophical debates and wider discussions about science in recent decades, such as the infamous "science wars." Examples and asides engage the beginning student; a glossary of terms explains key concepts; and suggestions for further reading are included at the end of each chapter. However, this is a textbook that doesn't feel like a textbook because it captures the historical drama of changes in how science has been conceived over the last one hundred years. Like no other text in this field, Theory and Reality combines a survey of recent history of the philosophy of science with current key debates in language that any beginning scholar or critical reader can follow.

Philosophy of Religion: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Tim Bayne

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0191071153

Category: Religion

Page: 144

View: 9386

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What is the philosophy of religion? How can we distinguish it from theology on the one hand and the psychology/sociology of religious belief on the other? What does it mean to describe God as 'eternal'? And should religious people want there to be good arguments for the existence of God, or is religious belief only authentic in the absence of these good arguments? In this Very Short Introduction Tim Bayne introduces the field of philosophy of religion, and engages with some of the most burning questions that philosophers discuss. Considering how 'religion' should be defined, and whether we even need to be able to define it in order to engage in the philosophy of religion, he goes on to discuss whether the existence of God matters. Exploring the problem of evil, Bayne also debates the connection between faith and reason, and the related question of what role reason should play in religious contexts. Shedding light on the relationship between science and religion, Bayne finishes by considering the topics of reincarnation and the afterlife. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Philosophy in the Islamic World

A Very Short Introduction

Author: Peter Adamson

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0199683670

Category: Philosophy

Page: 144

View: 6983

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In the history of philosophy, few topics are so relevant to today's cultural and political landscape as philosophy in the Islamic world. Yet, this remains one of the lesser-known philosophical traditions. In this Very Short Introduction, Peter Adamson explores the history of philosophy among Muslims, Jews, and Christians living in Islamic lands, from its historical background to thinkers in the twentieth century. Introducing the main philosophical themes of the Islamic world, Adamson integrates ideas from the Islamic and Abrahamic faiths to consider the broad philosophical questions that continue to invite debate: What is the relationship between reason and religious belief? What is the possibility of proving God's existence? What is the nature of knowledge? Drawing on the most recent research in the field, this book challenges the assumption of the cultural decline of philosophy and science in the Islamic world by demonstrating its rich heritage and overlap with other faiths and philosophies. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

An Introduction to the History and Philosophy of Science

Author: R. V. G. Menon

Publisher: Pearson Education India

ISBN: 8131786757

Category: Electronic books

Page: 168

View: 2333

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Aimed at students from all disciplines, An Introduction to the History and Philosophy of Science fulfils the requirements of introductory courses at the university level. Beginning with science in ancient and medieval times, the textbook describes how science evolved to what it is in the modern age. It also covers basic concepts and examines issues in the philosophy of science. Presented in very lucid language, the book requires no background in philosophy, and no background in history or science beyond the Class X level. This text will be a valuable resource for students not only of science but also of the humanities, and indeed anyone interested in the foundations in science and the influence of science on society as a whole.

Philosophy of Science

A Contemporary Introduction

Author: Alexander Rosenberg

Publisher: Psychology Press

ISBN: 041534316X

Category: Science

Page: 213

View: 3709

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Identifies the philosophical problems that science raises through an examination of questions about its nature, methods and justification. A valuable introduction for science and philosophy students alike.

Continental Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Simon Critchley

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191578320

Category: Philosophy

Page: 168

View: 8393

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Simon Critchley's Very Short Introduction shows that Continental philosophy encompasses a distinct set of philosophical traditions and practices, with a compelling range of problems all too often ignored by the analytic tradition. He discusses the ideas and approaches of philosophers such as Kant, Hegel, Nietzsche, Husserl, Heidegger, Sartre, Habermas, Foucault, and Derrida, and introduces key concepts such as existentialism, nihilism, and phenomenology by explaining their place in the Continental tradition. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Philosophy of Science

A Beginner's Guide

Author: Geoffrey Gorham

Publisher: Oneworld Publications

ISBN: 1780741758

Category: Science

Page: 224

View: 6450

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So the world didn’t end on 10 September 2008, but the possibility may have got you thinking. Examining core philosophical issues facing scientists, Geoffrey Gorham probes such controversial issues as the Large Hadron Collider, intelligent design, the prospect of human extinction, space colonization, and much more. Geoffrey Gorham is Assistant Professor in Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

Understanding Philosophy of Science

Author: James Ladyman

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134597908

Category: Philosophy

Page: 304

View: 6231

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Few can imagine a world without telephones or televisions; many depend on computers and the Internet as part of daily life. Without scientific theory, these developments would not have been possible. In this exceptionally clear and engaging introduction to philosophy of science, James Ladyman explores the philosophical questions that arise when we reflect on the nature of the scientific method and the knowledge it produces. He discusses whether fundamental philosophical questions about knowledge and reality might be answered by science, and considers in detail the debate between realists and antirealists about the extent of scientific knowledge. Along the way, central topics in philosophy of science, such as the demarcation of science from non-science, induction, confirmation and falsification, the relationship between theory and observation and relativism are all addressed. Important and complex current debates over underdetermination, inference to the best explaination and the implications of radical theory change are clarified and clearly explained for those new to the subject.

Medical Ethics: A Very Short Introduction

Author: R. A. Hope

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0192802828

Category: Medical

Page: 152

View: 8079

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Issues in medical ethics are rarely out of the media and it is an area of ethics that has particular interest for the general public as well as the medical practitioner. This short and accessible introduction deals with moral questions such as euthanasia as well as asking how health care resources can be distributed fairly.

Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Edward Craig

Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks

ISBN: 0192854216

Category: Philosophy

Page: 132

View: 9357

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Examines how philosophers including Plato, Descartes, Hobbes, Darwin, and de Beauvoir responded to real life situations, and how their responses continue to influence people today.

Knowledge: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Jennifer Nagel

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191637319

Category: Philosophy

Page: 152

View: 6793

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What is knowledge? How does it differ from mere belief? Do you need to be able to justify a claim in order to count as knowing it? How can we know that the outer world is real and not a dream? Questions like these are ancient ones, and the branch of philosophy dedicated to answering them - epistemology - has been active for thousands of years. In this thought-provoking Very Short Introduction, Jennifer Nagel considers these classic questions alongside new puzzles arising from recent discoveries about humanity, language, and the mind. Nagel explains the formation of major historical theories of knowledge, and shows how contemporary philosophers have developed new ways of understanding knowledge, using ideas from logic, linguistics, and psychology. Covering topics ranging from relativism and the problem of scepticism to the trustworthiness of internet sources, Nagel examines how progress has been made in understanding knowledge, using everyday examples to explain the key issues and debates ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

The Meaning of Science

An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science

Author: Tim Lewens

Publisher: Basic Books

ISBN: 0465097499

Category: Science

Page: 272

View: 3460

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Science has produced explanations for everything from the mechanisms of insect navigation to the formation of black holes and the workings of black markets. But how much can we trust science, and can we actually know the world through it? How does science work and how does it fail? And how can the work of scientists helpÑor hurtÑeveryday people? These are not questions that science can answer on its own. This is where philosophy of science comes in. Studying science without philosophy is, to quote Einstein, to be Òlike somebody who has seen thousands of trees but has never seen a forest.Ó Cambridge philosopher Tim Lewens shows us the forest. He walks us through the theories of seminal philosophers of science Karl Popper and Thomas Kuhn and considers what science is, how far it can and should reach, and how we can determine the nature of its truths and myths. These philosophical issues have consequences that stretch far beyond the laboratory. For instance: What role should scientists have in policy discussions on environmental issues such as fracking? What are the biases at play in the search for a biological function of the female orgasm? If brain scans can be used to demonstrate that a decision was made several seconds before a person actually makes a conscious choice, what does that tell us about the possibility of free will? By examining science through this philosophical lens, Lewens reveals what physics can teach us about reality, what biology teaches us about human nature, and what cognitive science teaches us about human freedom. A masterful analysis of the biggest scientific and ethical issues of our age, The Meaning of Science forces us to confront the practical, personal, and political purposes of scienceÑand why it matters to all of us.

Chaos

A Very Short Introduction

Author: Leonard Smith

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0192853783

Category: Mathematics

Page: 180

View: 3460

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An introduction to chaotic behavior dynamics describes its behavior in both science and the real world.