Structure of Scientific Revolutions

ISBN-10: 0226458121

ISBN-13: 9780226458120

Edition: 4th 2012

List price: $15.00 Buy it from $3.95
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Description:  A good book may have the power to change the way we see the world, but a great book actually becomes part of our daily consciousness, pervading our thinking to the point that we take it for granted, and we forget how provocative and challenging its ideas once were—and still are.The Structure of Scientific Revolutionsis that kind of book. When it was first published in 1962, it was a landmark event in the history and philosophy of science. Fifty years later, it still has many lessons to teach.WithThe Structure of Scientific Revolutions,Kuhn challenged long-standing linear notions of scientific progress, arguing that transformative ideas don’t arise from the day-to-day, gradual process of experimentation and data accumulation but that the revolutions in science, those breakthrough moments that disrupt accepted thinking and offer unanticipated ideas, occur outside of “normal science,” as he called it. Though Kuhn was writing when physics ruled the sciences, his ideas on how scientific revolutions bring order to the anomalies that amass over time in research experiments are still instructive in our biotech age.This new edition of Kuhn’s essential work in the history of science includes an insightful introduction by Ian Hacking, which clarifies terms popularized by Kuhn, including paradigm and incommensurability, and applies Kuhn’s ideas to the science of today. Usefully keyed to the separate sections of the book, Hacking’s introduction provides important background information as well as a contemporary context.  Newly designed, with an expanded index, this edition will be eagerly welcomed by the next generation of readers seeking to understand the history of our perspectives on science. 

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Book details

List price: $15.00
Edition: 4th
Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication date: 4/30/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 288
Size: 5.00" wide x 8.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.968
Language: English

Thomas S. Kuhn's work is best described as a normative historiography of science. He was educated at Harvard University, where in 1949 he completed a doctorate in physics. As a student, he was impressed by the differences between scientific method, as conventionally taught, and the way science actually works. Before moving to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1979, he taught at Harvard University, the University of California at Berkeley, and Princeton University. Kuhn's most celebrated contribution to the philosophy of science is his controversial idea of paradigms and paradigm shifts. A paradigm is understood as a widely shared theoretical framework within which scientific research is conducted. According to Kuhn, science normally develops more or less smoothly within such a paradigm until an accumulation of difficulties reduces its effectiveness. The paradigm finally breaks down in a crisis, which is followed by the formation of a radically new paradigm in a so-called scientific revolution. The new paradigm is accepted, even though it might neither resolve all of the accumulated difficulties nor explain the data better than the older paradigm that it replaces. We find examples of paradigm shifts in the work of Copernicus, Galileo, Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin, and others. Since its original publication in 1962, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions undoubtedly has been the single most influential book in the philosophy of science.

Ian Hacking is University Professor Emeritus at the University of Toronto. He holds the chair of Philosophy and History of Concepts at the College de France. Among his many books, the most recent is Rewriting the Soul.

Introductory Essay
Preface
Introduction: A Role for History
The Route to Normal Science
The Nature of Normal Science
Normal Science as Puzzle-solving
The Priority of Paradigms
Anomaly and the Emergence of Scientific Discoveries
Crisis and the Emergence of Scientific Theories
The Response to Crisis
The Nature and Necessity of Scientific Revolutions
Revolutions as Changes of World View
The Invisibility of Revolutions
The Resolution of Revolutions
Progress through Revolutions
Postscript-1969
Index
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