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Idealization and the aims of science.

Author: Angela Potochnik
Publisher: Chicago : University of Chicago Press 2017.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Science is the study of our world, as it is in its messy reality. Nonetheless, science requires idealization to function if we are to attempt to understand the world, we have to find ways to reduce its complexity. Idealization and the Aims of Science shows just how crucial idealization is to science and why it matters. Beginning with the acknowledgment of our status as limited human agents trying to make sense of an  Read more...
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Details

Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Angela Potochnik
ISBN: 9780226507057 022650705X
OCLC Number: 1016799166
Description: 288 p.
Responsibility: Angela Potochnik.

Abstract:

Science is the study of our world, as it is in its messy reality. Nonetheless, science requires idealization to function if we are to attempt to understand the world, we have to find ways to reduce its complexity. Idealization and the Aims of Science shows just how crucial idealization is to science and why it matters. Beginning with the acknowledgment of our status as limited human agents trying to make sense of an exceedingly complex world, Angela Potochnik moves on to explain how science aims to depict and make use of causal patterns a project that makes essential use of idealization. She offers case studies from a number of branches of science to demonstrate the ubiquity of idealization, shows how causal patterns are used to develop scientific explanations, and describes how the necessarily imperfect connection between science and truth leads to researchers' values influencing their findings. The resulting book is a tour de force, a synthesis of the study of idealization that also offers countless new insights and avenues for future exploration.

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"Angela Potochnik's ambitious book is an antidote to the view that the philosophy of science tries to pronounce grandly on what scientists ought to do." --Philip Ball "New Scientist " "This Read more...

 
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