Realist principles

Philosophy of Science 50 (2):227-249 (1983)
We list, with discussions, various principles of scientific realism, in order to exhibit their diversity and to emphasize certain serious problems of formulation. Ontological and epistemological principles are distinguished. Within the former category, some framed in semantic terms (truth, reference) serve their purpose vis-a-vis instrumentalism (Part 1). They fail, however, to distinguish the realist from a wide variety of (constructional) empiricists. Part 2 seeks purely ontological formulations, so devised that the empiricist cannot reconstruct them from within. The main task here is to characterize "independence of mind". A pair of notions, "physical invariance" and "anti-determination", seem to work. They enable us to assess anew "the problem of constructing the physical out of the phenomenal" (yielding certain clarifications demanded by Goodman). Modern cosmology, especially, is seen to present insuperable obstacles to such empiricist approaches to science. The final section on epistemological principles reveals a morass better avoided in favor of an elementary claim about perception, together with a rejection of any absolute observation/theory dichotomy. Finally, a positive, realist notion of "observable-in-principle" is sketched, and it is suggested that, from the perspective of relativistic cosmology, even this defines no boundary to potential knowledge
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1086/289107
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 23,217
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Manfred Stöckler (1986). Philosophen in der Mikrowelt — Ratlos? Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 17 (1):68-95.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

33 ( #143,658 of 1,932,452 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #456,121 of 1,932,452 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.