Philosophy of Science: A Very Short Introduction

Overview


What is science? Is there a real difference between science and myth? Is science objective? Can science explain everything? This Very Short Introduction provides a concise overview of the main themes of contemporary philosophy of science.

Beginning with a short history of science to set the scene, Samir Okasha goes on to investigate the nature of scientific reasoning, scientific explanation, revolutions in science, and theories such as realism and anti-realism. He also looks at...

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Philosophy of Science: A Very Short Introduction

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Overview


What is science? Is there a real difference between science and myth? Is science objective? Can science explain everything? This Very Short Introduction provides a concise overview of the main themes of contemporary philosophy of science.

Beginning with a short history of science to set the scene, Samir Okasha goes on to investigate the nature of scientific reasoning, scientific explanation, revolutions in science, and theories such as realism and anti-realism. He also looks at philosophical issues in particular sciences, including the problem of classification in biology, and the nature of space and time in physics. The final chapter touches on the conflicts between science and religion, and explores whether science is ultimately a good thing.

About the Series: Combining authority with wit, accessibility, and style, Very Short Introductions offer an introduction to some of life's most interesting topics. Written by experts for the newcomer, they demonstrate the finest contemporary thinking about the central problems and issues in hundreds of key topics, from philosophy to Freud, quantum theory to Islam.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Very helpful.... Okasha presents the issues and arguments with delightful clarity."--Philosophia Christi

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780192802835
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 8/28/2002
  • Series: Very Short Introductions Series
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 276,068
  • Lexile: 1220L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.90 (w) x 4.40 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Samir Okasha is currently Lecturer in Philosophy, University of York. He has published numerous articles in philosophy journals, in the areas of philosophy of science, philosophy of biology, and epistemology. He has previously held a Jacobean Fellowship in Philosophy at University of London and has taught at the University of Mexico.

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Table of Contents

1. What is science?
A very short history of science
Does science have an essential nature?
Science and pseudo-science
2. Scientific reasoning
Induction and deduction
Hume's problem
Two types of inductive reasoning
Probability and induction
3. Explanation in science
The 'covering-law' model of explanation
Alternative models of explanation
Can science explain everything?
4. Realism and anti-realism about science
Scientific realism
Objections to scientific realism
Varieties of anti-realism
5. Scientific change and scientific revolutions
Explaining scientific change
Thomas Kuhn on 'normal' and 'revolutionary' science
Sociological accounts of scientific change
6. Philosophical problems in physics, biology and linguistics
Leibniz versus Newton on absolute space
The problem of biological classification
Is knowledge of language innate
7. Science and its critics
Is science a good thing?
Science and religion
The science wars

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Philosophy of science in a nutshell

    This book explains the progress of ideas in science. The author tries to answer fundamental questions like "What is science?" and in his journey mentions different philosophers who gave answer to these basic question. The book contains information about Kuhn,Popper, the Empiricist etc.

    It's a must read for anyone who wants a basic and comprehensive introduction to this topic.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 28, 2012

    Good short review - bad science

    The author has given an easy to read, short work on the philosophy of science, but his science is not good. For instance, describing the discoverry of Uranus as a "failure of Newtonian Mechanics" is wrong. It was a triumph of Newtonian Mechanics

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 15, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

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