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Profile: Lydia Patton (Virginia Tech)
  1. Lydia Patton (forthcoming). Hilbert's Objectivity. Historia Mathematica.
    Detlefsen (1986) reads Hilbert's program as a sophisticated defense of instrumentalism, but Feferman (1998) has it that Hilbert's program leaves significant ontological questions unanswered. One such question is of the reference of individual number terms. Hilbert's use of admittedly "meaningless" signs for numbers and formulae appears to impair his ability to establish the reference of mathematical terms and the content of mathematical propositions (Weyl (1949); Kitcher (1976)). The paper traces the history and context of Hilbert's reasoning about signs, which illuminates (...)
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  2. Lydia Patton (forthcoming). Methodology of the Sciences. In Michael Forster & Kristin Gjesdal (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of German Philosophy in the Nineteenth Century. Oxford University Press.
    In the growing Prussian university system of the early nineteenth century, "Wissenschaft" (science) was seen as an endeavor common to university faculties, characterized by a rigorous methodology. On this view, history and jurisprudence are sciences, as much as is physics. Nineteenth century trends challenged this view: the increasing influence of materialist and positivist philosophies, profound changes in the relationships between university faculties, and the defense of Kant's classification of the sciences by neo-Kantians. Wilhelm Dilthey's defense of the independence of the (...)
     
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  3. Lydia Patton (ed.) (2014). Philosophy, Science, and History: A Guide and Reader. Routledge.
    Philosophy, Science, and History: A Guide and Reader is a compact overview of HOPOS that aims to introduce students to the groundwork of the field, but also to stimulate innovative research. The original introduction focuses on scientific theory change, assessment, discovery, and pursuit. Part I of the Reader begins with classic texts in the history of logical empiricism, including Reichenbach's discovery-justification distinction. With careful reference to Kuhn's analysis of scientific revolutions, the section provides key texts analyzing the relationship of HOPOS (...)
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  4. Lydia Patton (2013). Immanuel Kant, Natural Science. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews.
    Natural Science is a new volume of the Cambridge translations of Kant's works. It makes available some of the most significant texts of Kant's pre-Critical period, some appearing for the first time in English translation. The translations are largely clear and accurate. Eric Watkins is a sure and knowledgeable editor, and provides concise and informative introductions to each text.
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  5. Nadeem J. Z. Hussain & Lydia Patton, Friedrich Albert Lange. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Friedrich Albert Lange (b. 1828, d. 1875) was a German philosopher, pedagogue, political activist, and journalist. He was one of the originators of neo-Kantianism and an important figure in the founding of the Marburg school of neo-Kantianism. He is also played a significant role in the German labour movement and in the development of social democratic thought. His book, THE HISTORY OF MATERIALISM, was a standard introduction to materialism and the history of philosophy well into the twentieth century.
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  6. Lydia Patton (2012). Experiment and Theory Building. Synthese 184 (3):235-246.
    I examine the role of inference from experiment in theory building. What are the options open to the scientific community when faced with an experimental result that appears to be in conflict with accepted theory? I distinguish, in Laudan's (1977), Nickels's (1981), and Franklin's (1993) sense, between the context of pursuit and the context of justification of a scientific theory. Making this distinction allows for a productive middle position between epistemic realism and constructivism. The decision to pursue a new or (...)
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  7. Lydia Patton (2011). Anti-Psychologism About Necessity: Friedrich Albert Lange on Objective Inference. History and Philosophy of Logic 32 (2):139 - 152.
    In the nineteenth century, the separation of naturalist or psychological accounts of validity from normative validity came into question. In his 1877 Logical Studies (Logische Studien), Friedrich Albert Lange argues that the basis for necessary inference is demonstration, which takes place by spatially delimiting the extension of concepts using imagined or physical diagrams. These diagrams are signs or indications of concepts' extension, but do not represent their content. Only the inference as a whole captures the objective content of the proof. (...)
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  8. Lydia Patton (2011). Reconsidering Experiments. HOPOS 1 (2):209-226.
    Experiments may not reveal their full import at the time that they are performed. The scientists who perform them usually are testing a specific hypothesis and quite often have specific expectations limiting the possible inferences that can be drawn from the experiment. Nonetheless, as Hacking has said, experiments have lives of their own. Those lives do not end with the initial report of the results and consequences of the experiment. Going back and rethinking the consequences of the experiment in a (...)
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  9. Lydia Patton (2011). Review of Discourse on a New Method: Reinvigorating the Marriage of History and Philosophy of Science. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews.
    That the history and the philosophy of science have been united in a form of disciplinary marriage is a fact. There are pressing questions about the state of this union. Discourse on a New Method: Reinvigorating the Marriage of History and Philosophy of Science is a state of the union address, but also an articulation of compelling and well-defended positions on strategies for making progress in the history and philosophy of science.
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  10. Lydia Patton (2011). The Paradox of Infinite Given Magnitude: Why Kantian Epistemology Needs Metaphysical Space. Kant-Studien 102 (3):273-289.
    Kant's account of space as an infinite given magnitude in the Critique of Pure Reason is paradoxical, since infinite magnitudes go beyond the limits of possible experience. Michael Friedman's and Charles Parsons's accounts make sense of geometrical construction, but I argue that they do not resolve the paradox. I argue that metaphysical space is based on the ability of the subject to generate distinctly oriented spatial magnitudes of invariant scalar quantity through translation or rotation. The set of determinately oriented, constructed (...)
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  11. Lydia Patton (2010). Review of Makkreel and Luft, Eds., Neo-Kantianism in Contemporary Philosophy. [REVIEW] Philosophy in Review 30 (4):280-282.
    A volume dealing seriously with the influence of the major schools of Neo-Kantian thought on contemporary philosophy has been needed sorely for some time. But this volume of essays aims higher: it 'is published in the hopes that it will secure Neo-Kantianism a significant place in contemporary philosophical discussions' (Introduction, 1). The aim of the book, then, is partly to provide a history of major Neo-Kantian thinkers and their influence, and partly to argue for their importance in contemporary (continental) philosophy.
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  12. Lydia Patton (2010). Review of Hyder, The Determinate World: Kant and Helmholtz on the Physical Meaning of Geometry. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2010 (7).
    Hyder constructs two historical narratives. First, he gives an account of Helmholtz's relation to Kant, from the famous Raumproblem, which preoccupied philosophers, geometers, and scientists in the mid-19th century, to Helmholtz's arguments in his four papers on geometry from 1868 to 1878 that geometry is, in some sense, an empirical science (chapters 5 and 6). The second theme is the argument for the necessity of central forces to a determinate scientific description of physical reality, an abiding concern of Helmholtz's, and (...)
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  13. Lydia Patton (2009). Signs, Toy Models, and the A Priori. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 40 (3):281-289.
    The Marburg neo-Kantians argue that Hermann von Helmholtz's empiricist account of the a priori does not account for certain knowledge, since it is based on a psychological phenomenon, trust in the regularities of nature. They argue that Helmholtz's account raises the 'problem of validity' (Gueltigkeitsproblem): how to establish a warranted claim that observed regularities are based on actual relations. I reconstruct Heinrich Hertz's and Ludwig Wittgenstein's Bild theoretic answer to the problem of validity: that scientists and philosophers can depict the (...)
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  14. Lydia Patton (2009). Scientific Understanding. [REVIEW] Isis 101 (4):932-933..
    In _Aspects of Scientific Explanation_ (New York, 1965), Carl Hempel argued that the philosophy of science should focus on objectivist explanation and should not incorporate an account of pragmatic or subjective understanding. The stated aim of this collection of essays is to argue against Hempel's objectivist view by arguing for incorporating accounts of understanding into the philosophy of science and by giving a substantive account of the role of understanding in modeling and in scientific practice. The volume is ambitious and (...)
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  15. Lydia Patton (2008). Review of Munk (Ed), Hermann Cohen's Critical Idealism and Poma, Yearning for Form and Other Essays on Hermann Cohen's Thought. [REVIEW] European Journal of Philosophy 16 (1):142–148.
    Recent work on the philosophy of Hermann Cohen (1848-1914), founder of the Marburg School of Neo-Kantianism, has appeared in three distinct circles in the English-speaking philosophical context. Cohen re-interpreted Kant's a priori to take scientific developments into account. Michael Friedman acknowledges that the later development of this view by Cohen's intellectual heir Ernst Cassirer influenced Friedman's work on the dynamic a priori, especially in the history and philosophy of science. Owing to Cohen's links to Franz Rosenzweig, scholars have begun to (...)
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  16. Lydia Patton, Hermann Von Helmholtz. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Hermann von Helmholtz (1821-1894) participated in two of the most significant developments in physics and in the philosophy of science in the 19th century: the proof that Euclidean geometry does not describe the only possible visualizable and physical space, and the shift from physics based on actions between particles at a distance to the field theory. Helmholtz achieved a staggering number of scientific results, including the formulation of energy conservation, the vortex equations for fluid dynamics, the notion of free energy (...)
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  17. Ernst Cassirer & Lydia Patton (2005). Hermann Cohen and the Renewal of Kantian Philosophy. Angelaki 10 (1):95-108.
    The three works dedicated to securing the foundation of Kantian doctrine are linked inextricably to Hermann Cohen's philosophical life's work. For as much as Cohen distanced himself from Kant's conclusions on individual points in building his own system, the methodological consciousness that inspired all of Cohen's individual achievements certainly first achieved clarity and maturity in his scientific, comprehensive analysis of Kant's fundamental works.
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  18. Lydia Patton (2005). The Critical Philosophy Renewed. Angelaki 10 (1):109 – 118.
    German supporters of the Kantian philosophy in the late 19th century took one of two forks in the road: the fork leading to Baden, and the Southwest School of neo-Kantian philosophy, and the fork leading to Marburg, and the Marburg School, founded by Hermann Cohen. Between 1876, when Cohen came to Marburg, and 1918, the year of Cohen's death, Cohen, with his Marburg School, had a profound influence on German academia.
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  19. Lydia Patton (2004). Hermann Cohen's History and Philosophy of Science. Dissertation, McGill University
    In my dissertation, I present Hermann Cohen's foundation for the history and philosophy of science. My investigation begins with Cohen's formulation of a neo-Kantian epistemology. I analyze Cohen's early work, especially his contributions to 19th century debates about the theory of knowledge. I conclude by examining Cohen's mature theory of science in two works, The Principle of the Infinitesimal Method and its History of 1883, and Cohen's extensive 1914 Introduction to Friedrich Lange's History of Materialism. In the former, Cohen gives (...)
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