Cultural Boundaries of Science Credibility on the Line

ISBN-10: 0226292622

ISBN-13: 9780226292625

Edition: 1999

Authors: Thomas F. Gieryn

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Description:

Why is science so credible? Usual answers center on scientists' objective methods or their powerful instruments. In his new book, Thomas Gieryn argues that a better explanation for the cultural authority of science lies downstream, when scientific claims leave laboratories and enter courtrooms, boardrooms, and living rooms. On such occasions, we use "maps" to decide who to believe--cultural maps demarcating "science" from pseudoscience, ideology, faith, or nonsense. Gieryn looks at episodes of boundary-work: Was phrenology good science? How about cold fusion? Is social science really scientific? Is organic farming? After centuries of disputes like these, Gieryn finds no stable criteria that absolutely distinguish science from non-science. Science remains a pliable cultural space, flexibly reshaped to claim credibility for some beliefs while denying it to others. In a timely epilogue, Gieryn finds this same controversy at the heart of the raging "science wars."
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Book details

List price: $41.00
Copyright year: 1999
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication date: 1/15/1999
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 410
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.298
Language: English

Preface
Introduction Contesting Credibility Cartographically
John Tyndall's Double Boundary-Work: Science, Religion, and Mechanics in Victorian England
The U.S. Congress Demarcates Natural Science and Social Science (Twice)
May the Best Science Win: Competition for the Chair of Logic and Metaphysics at the University of Edinburgh, 1836
The (Cold) Fusion of Science, Mass Media, and Politics
Hybridizing Credibilities: Albert and Gabrielle Howard Compost Organic Waste, Science, and the Rest of Society Epilogue Home to Roost "Science Wars" as Boundary-Work
Bibliography of Secondary Works
Index
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