Pragmatic Incommensurability

Abstract

Kuhn's incommensurability thesis has generally been interpreted by friends and foes alike so as to preclude direct rational communication across revolutionary divides in science. In this paper, a weaker form of incommensurability is sketched which allows eventual comparison of incommensurable theories, but is consistent with Kuhn's model of science. Incommensurability occurs whenever the knowledge or ability to translate from the language of one theory to that of another is lacking. It can be resolved by acquiring the necessary knowledge or ability.

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2011-05-29

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John Collier
University of KwaZulu-Natal

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Citations of this work

Paul Feyerabend.John Preston - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Kuhn on Incommensurability and Theory Choice.Alex Davies - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 44 (4):571-579.

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