Contested Boundaries: The String Theory Debates and Ideologies of Science

Perspectives on Science 23 (2):192-227 (2015)
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. Over the last three decades, physicists have engaged in, sometimes heated, debates about relative merits and prospects of string theory as a viable research program and even about its status as a science. The aim of this paper is to provide a deeper understanding of this controversy as a particular form of boundary discourse. Drawing on the sociological work of Thomas Gieryn and Lawrence Prelli, we bring to light the way in which protagonists appeal to, and rhetorically construct, different views about the scientific method and the scientific ethos, in an effort to legitimize or delegitimize string theory.



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Kristian Camilleri
University of Melbourne

References found in this work

Normative naturalism.Larry Laudan - 1990 - Philosophy of Science 57 (1):44-59.
Mirror Symmetry and Other Miracles in Superstring Theory.Dean Rickles - 2013 - Foundations of Physics 43 (1):54-80.
A Perspective on the Landscape Problem.Lee Smolin - 2013 - Foundations of Physics 43 (1):21-45.

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