S'07 PHI 539 Theory of Knowledge:
Seminar S2002 representation, structuralism
Seminar F2002 decision theory
Junior Seminar F2004 -- info on Blackboard site
phi203: metaphysics and epistemology
phi204: philos. of science
phi320: philos. and literature
phi327: phil.of quantum mech.
phi340: philosophical logic Fall 2004
PHI 539 SEMINAR F2004 scientific realism, structural realism
The first half of the semester will be devoted to the story of Structural Realism, initiated in 1985 by John Worrall’s "Structural realism: the best of both worlds?" and joined or criticized by a number of authors: Psillos, Ladyman, Chakravartty, Zahar, French, ... (See below for some bibliography.) In response I’ll present an alternative Empiricist Structuralism, claiming precisely the virtues that Worrall wanted, without the ontology.
Relevant responses include papers presented at symposia at the Philosophy of Science Association 2002 and 2004, equally preoccupied with visions of structuralism about science. (The papers will be available to the extent possible.)
The second half of the semester will concentrate on views about scientific
in a more general context.
The guiding theme will still be that science representsonly structure , in some sense. Attempts to make
have tended to fail rather spectacularly.
We’ll look at how Russell tried in The Analysis of Matter, Carnap in the Logische Aufbau, and David Lewis
in his reply to Putnam’s ‘model-theoretic’
argument against metaphysical realism.
BIBLIOGRAPHY (small selection)