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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Mary Ellen Wurzbach, RN, MSN, PhD (University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh)
Description: This is an anthology of readings related to the philosophy of science in nursing. The editors have attempted to identify important currents in the philosophy of science that have influenced prominent nurse theorists and knowledge development in nursing.
Purpose: The purpose is to assist the reader in an investigation of the philosophy of science in nursing. The genesis of the book was the editors' identification of a need that students expand their understanding of philosophy and the development of scientific knowledge. The editors hope that the debate on the need for plurality and diversity of philosophical perspectives in defining the focus of nursing will be continued.
Audience: Students, particularly masters and doctoral students in nursing, as well as faculty who teach theory or nursing science courses will be most interested in this book. It would also be beneficial for students of nursing research since, according to the editors, philosophical orientation directs the development of the research question, the phenomena selected for study, and the choice of method for inquiry.
Features: This collection of essays is written by well known philosophers of science and nurse philosophers who have written about the philosophy of nursing science. The readings cover the topics of truth, explanation, free will or determinism, phenomenology, critical theory, science and gender, and post-modernism as they relate to both scientific philosophy and nursing.
Assessment: This is an outstanding addition to the nursing science literature. The major topics of the philosophy of science are addressed and their relationship to nursing science discussed. The contributors are all experts in the field. A comparison to other textbooks is not possible because of the uniqueness of the topic. It is an excellent addition to the library of masters and doctoral students as well as faculty and students of the philosophy of nursing science.