The book provides a practical guide to the application of Critical Realism (CR), an increasingly popular philosophy of social science, in empirical research projects. Each purpose-written chapter reviews major social science research methods and contains extended illustration of how to conduct inquiry using CR.
An almost unbelievable amount of false philosophy has arisen through not realizing what ‘existence’ means…. [It] rests upon the notion that existence is, so to speak, a property that you can attribute to things, and that the things that exist have the property of existence and the things that do not exist do not. That is rubbish . I have dared to puncture several metaphysical balloons and nothing came out of them but hot air.
Web-based platforms play an increasingly important role in managing and sharing research data of all types and sizes. This article presents a case study of the data storage, sharing, and management platform Figshare. We argue that such platforms are displacing and reconfiguring the infrastructure of norms, technologies, and institutions that underlies traditional scholarly communication. Using a theoretical framework that combines infrastructure studies with platform studies, we show that Figshare leverages the platform logic of core and complementary components to re-integrate a (...) presently splintered scholarly infrastructure. By means of this logic, platforms may provide the path to bring data inside a scholarly communication system still optimized mainly for text publications. Yet the platform strategy also risks turning over critical scientific functions to private firms whose longevity, openness, and corporate goals remain uncertain. It may amplify the existing trend of splintering infrastructures, with attendant effects on equity of service. (shrink)
philosophy of religion. Though not all of the philosophers discussed were nonbelievers or antireligious, they can be considered to be "freethinkers." They pursued the cause of knowledge wherever their thinking led them, often to iconoclastic positions." --Book Jacket.
The Alleged Turning Point in European Philosophy Existentialists, especially those who follow either Heidegger or Jaspers, find a great deal objectionable in what they variously call ‘scientism’, ‘scientific rationalism’, and ‘positivism’. In this article I shall discuss one of the alleged defects of scientific rationalism, that it recognizes only one kind of truth—the kind that existentialists call ‘objective truth’. ‘One great achievement of existential philosophy,’ writes William Barrett, ‘has been a new interpretation of the idea of truth in order to (...) point out that there are different kinds of truth, where a rigid scientific rationalism had postulated but one kind: objective scientific truth.’ Not only scientific rationalists but traditional metaphysicians from Plato to Aquinas and Hegel are judged to be equally at fault here: they too have failed to recognize any truth other than the objective variety. It was Kierkegaard who for the first time effectively challenged the assumptions shared by scientific rationalists and traditional metaphysicians. Kierkegaard, in Barrett's words, ‘had to re-open the whole question of the meaning of truth … his stand on the question may well have marked a turning point in European philosophy.’. (shrink)
This essay proposes a cultural and historical explanation for the American Military's fascination with computing. Three key elements of post-WWII US political culture — apocalyptic struggle with the USSR, subsuming all other conflicts: a long history of antimilitarist sentiment in American politics; and the rise of science-based military power — contributed to a sense of the world as a closed system accessible to American technological control. A developing scientific systems discourse, centrally including computer science and AI, was adopted for strategic (...) thinking and military technology. The Strategic Computing and Strategic Defense Initiatives are discussed as contemporary examples of this conjunction. (shrink)
This title was first published in 2000. Founded in 1914 by Wyndham Lewis and christened by Ezra Pound, the Vorticism movement was a sustained act of aggression against the moribund Victorianism seen as stifling to artistic energies. Inspired by the example of F.T.Marinetti and the Futurists, the Vorticists were nevertheless harshly critical of the Futurists' naive enthusiasm for modernity. They created their own style of geometric abstraction to celebrate the new consciousness of humanity in a mechanized urban environment. But their (...) splintered and discordant style also measured the cost of the psychic disruption that modernity caused. This illustrated guide to the movement covers topics including sculpture, painting, literary Vorticism, women in Vorticism and Vorticist aesthetics. (shrink)
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