Graduate studies at Western
International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 16 (2):171 – 186 (2002)
|Abstract||The article presents a critical discussion of Larry Laudan's naturalistic metamethodological theory known as normative naturalism (NN). I examine the strongest extant objection to NN, and, with reference to ideas in Freedman ( Philosophy of Science , 66 (Proceedings), pp. S526-S537, 1999), show how NN survives it. I then go on to outline two problems that really do compromise NN. The first revolves around Laudan's conception of the relationship between scientific values and the history of science. Laudan argues we can make sense of progress in science without seeing great scientists in the past as having held the cognitive values and methodological rules we hold today as important for science. I argue this is extremely implausible, and moreover that Laudan must see our values today as justified by reference to the values of past scientists if he is to avoid a pernicious form of relativism. The second problem with NN is that its conception of methodological rules--as hypothetical imperatives linking cognitive means to ends--is untenable. Such rules would not be needed in a scientific community; moreover it is doubtful whether they should class as rules at all. I conclude by suggesting that the distinction between cognitive means and ends which undergirds Laudan's view is intuitively not well founded, and in any case does not provide sufficient materials for a viable normative naturalized epistemology.|
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Configure|
Similar books and articles
Karyn L. Freedman (2006). Normative Naturalism and Epistemic Relativism. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 20 (3):309 – 322.
David B. Resnik (1992). Are Methodological Rules Hypothetical Imperatives? Philosophy of Science 59 (3):498-507.
Alexander Rosenberg (1990). Normative Naturalism and the Role of Philosophy. Philosophy of Science 57 (1):34-43.
Dimitri Ginev (1999). On the Hermeneutic Alternative to Normative Naturalism. Theoria 14 (2):291-301.
Howard Sankey (1996). Normative Naturalism and the Challenge of Relativism: Laudan Versus Worrall on the Justification of Methodological Principles. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 10 (1):37 – 51.
Matthias Kaiser (1991). Progress and Rationality: Laudan's Attempt to Divorce a Happy Couple. Inquiry 34 (4):433-455.
Karyn Freedman (1999). Laudan's Naturalistic Axiology. Philosophy of Science 66 (3):537.
Warren Schmaus (1996). The Empirical Character of Methodological Rules. Philosophy of Science 63 (3):106.
Dan McArthur (2007). Laudan, Friedman and the Role of the A Priori in Science. Journal of Philosophical Research 32:169-190.
Dan McArthur (2005). Normative Naturalism and the Relativised a Priori. Journal for General Philosophy of Science 36 (2):331 - 350.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads57 ( #20,887 of 739,461 )
Recent downloads (6 months)40 ( #2,302 of 739,461 )
How can I increase my downloads?