David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Erkenntnis 75 (3):391-411 (2011)
This paper provides an interpretation of Hans-Jörg Rheinberger’s notions of epistemic things and historical epistemology . I argue that Rheinberger’s approach articulates a unique contribution to current debates about integrated HPS, and I propose some modifications and extensions of this contribution. Drawing on examples from memory research, I show that Rheinberger is right to highlight a particular feature of many objects of empirical research (“epistemic things”)—especially in the contexts of exploratory experimentation—namely our lack of knowledge about them. I argue that this analysis needs to be supplemented with an account of what scientists do know, and in particular, how they are able to attribute rudimentary empirical contours to objects of research. These contours are closely connected to paradigmatic research designs, which in turn are tied to basic methodological rules for the exploration of the purported phenomena. I suggest that we engage with such rules in order to develop our own normative (epistemological) categories, and I tie this proposal to the idea of a methodological naturalism in philosophy of science
|Keywords||historical epistemology philosophy of psychology epistemology of experimentation|
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References found in this work BETA
Theodore Arabatzis (2011). On the Historicity of Scientific Objects. Erkenntnis 75 (3):377-390.
Hasok Chang (2011). The Persistence of Epistemic Objects Through Scientific Change. Erkenntnis 75 (3):413-429.
Nelson Cowan (2001). The Magical Number 4 in Short-Term Memory: A Reconsideration of Mental Storage Capacity. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (1):87-114.
Uljana Feest (2010). Concepts as Tools in the Experimental Generation of Knowledge in Cognitive Neuropsychology. Spontaneous Generations 4 (1):173-190.
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