After Critical Realism?: The Relevance of Contemporary Science

Journal of Critical Realism 9 (1):59-88 (2010)

Heikki Patomäki
University of Helsinki
While recent scientific discoveries and theories can be taken to provide additional evidence for some of the central critical realist claims, overall critical realism seems to be in need of reassessment, revisions and further developments. First, I argue that here has been an inclination among critical realists to prefer the language and model of philosophy to falsifiable science, creating a predisposition towards somewhat sectarian practices. These tendencies also account for the relative lack of substantive research based on, or inspired by, critical realism. Second, I make a case for radicalising the critique of anthropomorphism and applying it to critical realism itself. Third, and in some contrast to the second point, I argue for rethinking the subject-object relationship and the concept of the intransitive dimension of science. The critique of anthropocentrism has been taken too far. We are implicated in and are a part of the object of our study. It even seems that we humans are a part of the process of the cosmos becoming conscious of itself, also through science.
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DOI 10.1558/jcr.v9i1.59
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The Anthropic Cosmological Principle.John D. Barrow - 1986 - Oxford University Press.

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