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Filozoficzny kontekst nauki
Philosophical Context of Science

Author(s): Agnieszka Lekka-Kowalik
Subject(s): Philosophy
Published by: Towarzystwo Naukowe KUL & Katolicki Uniwersytet Lubelski Jana Pawła II
Keywords: science; philosophy; methodological isolationism; philosophical assumptions; interpretations of the term "assumption"

Summary/Abstract: Drawing on the analysis developed by M. Heller and J. !yci"ski in a work published 25 years ago, the paper shows that science is essentially “nested” in philosophy, because various philosophical assumptions are present in it. Five types of such assumptions are considered: (a) philosophical conditionings of empirical sciences; (b) philosophical themata; (c) philosophical implications of empirical theories; (d) philosophical theses employed in scientific argumentation; (e) philosophical criteria of scientificity. Some possible interpretations of the first type listed are analyzed. They may be: (1) defined in terms of logical inference; (2) treated as the necessary or/and sufficient condition; (3) taken as presupposition (as understood in pragmatics); (4) interpreted psychologically as reasons for acceptance; (5) seen as the condition of understanding of scientific claims. The considerations developed in the paper show that those assumptions do not constitute a homogeneous group. Some are the a priori of science in that sense that rationality of doing science depend on their acceptance; some—for example, so-called ontological commitments—result from an acceptance of a certain theory; some others—interpreted, following E. McMullin, as non-standard epistemic factors—are a matter of choice and are historically changeable, what brings the issue of rational reasons for their acceptance; and still others are theses which belong both to science and to philosophy, what brings the issue of their mutual falsifiability. The presence of philosophical assumptions in science nevertheless indicates that neither methodological isolationism, nor attempts to subordinate one kind of cognition to the other capture correctly the relation between science and philosophy.

  • Issue Year: 60/2012
  • Issue No: 4
  • Page Range: 261-281
  • Page Count: 21
  • Language: Polish