Revue Internationale de Systémique 12 (3):225-252 (1998)

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Résumé Le débat holisme-réductionnisme se structure autour de trois domaines sémantiques : l 'ontologie, la méthodologie et l'épistémologie. Généralement, une méthodologie analytique s'accompagne d'une ontologie atomiste et de la réduction des lois et théorie des niveaux d'organisation supérieurs aux lois et théorie des niveaux inférieurs. Par contre, une ontologie holiste, relationnelle peut s'accorder au concept d'émergence. En conséquence dans l'élaboration des lois et théories d'un phénomène appartenant à un niveau donné la prise en compte du niveau d'organisation supérieurs se révélera déterminante. Les propositions philosophiques anti-mécanicistes de précurseur tels que Bradley, S. Alexander, A.N. Whitehead, C.L. Morgan, D.C. Broad, même en restant au niveau d'une forme de proto-émergentisme représentent le fondement épistémologique à partir duquel s'est développée une méthodologie véritablement émergentiste. Abstract The holism-reductionism debate is structured around three areas of semantics: ontology, methodology and epistemology. As a general rule, an analytical methodology goes with an atomist ontology, and the reduction of laws and theories from the higher levels of organisation to the laws and theories of lower levels. On the other hand, a holistic and relational ontology can be in unison with the concept of emergence. As a consequence, in elaborating laws and theories of a phenornenon of a given level, taking into account that the higher level of organisation will be determinant. The philosophical and anti-mechanistic propositions of precursors such as F. Bradley, S. Alexander, A.N. Whitehead, C.L. Morgan, D.C. Broad, even remaining at the level of a kind of proto-emergentism represent the epistemological basis on which a true emergentist methodology has been developed.
Keywords Philosophy of science  Holism  Reductionism  Emergence  cybernetics  ontology  atomism  epistemological holism  methodological holism  epistemology
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