Philosophical Papers 42 (1):25 - 48 (2013)

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Abstract
Carnap's mature philosophy of science is an attempt to dissolve the scientific realism debate altogether as a philosophical pseudo-question. His argument depends upon a logico-semantic thesis regarding the structure of a scientific theory, and more importantly, a meta-ontological thesis regarding the explication of existence claims. The latter commits Carnap to a distinction between the analytic and the synthetic, which was allegedly refuted by Quine. The contemporary philosophy of science has therefore sought to distance itself from logico-semantic considerations, and has pursued the scientific realism debate as an essentially epistemological thesis. I show however that one of the most prominent positions in this recent debate?van Fraassen's constructive empiricism?not only ends up in very close proximity to Carnap's attempted dissolution, but even provides the resources for extending and refining his programme. Rather than a historical footnote, Carnap's mature philosophy of science offers a live-option in the current debate
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DOI 10.1080/05568641.2013.774722
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Two Dogmas of Empiricism.Willard V. O. Quine - 1951 - Philosophical Review 60 (1):20–43.
Empiricism, Semantics, and Ontology.Rudolf Carnap - 1950 - Revue Internationale de Philosophie 4 (11):20-40.

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