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The Routledge Handbook of Scientific Realism

Edited by: Juha Saatsi

Print publication date:  December  2017
Online publication date:  November  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138888852
eBook ISBN: 9780203712498
Adobe ISBN:

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Book description

Scientific realism is a central, long-standing, and hotly debated topic in philosophy of science. Debates about scientific realism concern the very nature and extent of scientific knowledge and progress. Scientific realists defend a positive epistemic attitude towards our best theories and models regarding how they represent the world that is unobservable to our naked senses. Various realist theses are under sceptical fire from scientific antirealists, e.g. empiricists and instrumentalists. The different dimensions of the ensuing debate centrally connect to numerous other topics in philosophy of science and beyond.

The Routledge Handbook of Scientific Realism is an outstanding reference source ? the first collection of its kind ? to the key issues, positions, and arguments in this important topic. Its thirty-four chapters, written by a team of international experts, are divided into five parts:

  • Historical development of the realist stance
  • Classic debate: core issues and positions
  • Perspectives on contemporary debates
  • The realism debate in disciplinary context
  • Broader reflections

In these sections, the core issues and debates presented, analysed, and set into broader historical and disciplinary contexts. The central issues covered include motivations and arguments for realism; challenges to realism from underdetermination and history of science; different variants of realism; the connection of realism to relativism and perspectivism; and the relationship between realism, metaphysics, and epistemology.

The Routledge Handbook of Scientific Realism is essential reading for students and researchers in philosophy of science. It will also be very useful for anyone interested in the nature and extent of scientific knowledge.

Table of contents

Prelims Download PDF
Introduction Download PDF
Chapter  1:  Realism and Logical Empiricism Download PDF
Chapter  2:  The Realist Turn in the Philosophy of Science Download PDF
Chapter  3:  Success of Science as a Motivation for Realism Download PDF
Chapter  4:  Historical Challenges to Realism Download PDF
Chapter  5:  Underdetermination Download PDF
Chapter  6:  Kuhn, Relativism and Realism Download PDF
Chapter  7:  Instrumentalism Download PDF
Chapter  8:  Empiricism Download PDF
Chapter  9:  Structural Realism and its Variants Download PDF
Chapter  10:  Entity Realism Download PDF
Chapter  11:  Truthlikeness and Approximate Truth Download PDF
Chapter  12:  Global Versus Local Arguments for Realism Download PDF
Chapter  13:  Perspectivism Download PDF
Chapter  14:  Is Pluralism Compatible with Scientific Realism? Download PDF
Chapter  15:  Scientific Progress Download PDF
Chapter  16:  Realism and the Limits of Explanatory Reasoning Download PDF
Chapter  17:  Unconceived Alternatives and the Strategy of Historical Ostension Download PDF
Chapter  18:  Realism, Antirealism, Epistemic Stances, and Voluntarism Download PDF
Chapter  19:  Modeling and Realism Download PDF
Chapter  20:  Success and Scientific Realism Download PDF
Chapter  21:  Scientific Realism and Social Epistemology Download PDF
Chapter  22:  Scientific Realism and High-Energy Physics Download PDF
Chapter  23:  Getting Real about Quantum Mechanics Download PDF
Chapter  24:  Scientific Realism and Primordial Cosmology Download PDF
Chapter  25:  Three Kinds of Realism about Historical Science Download PDF
Chapter  26:  Scientific Realism and the Earth Sciences Download PDF
Chapter  27:  Scientific Realism and Chemistry Download PDF
Chapter  28:  Realism about Cognitive Science Download PDF
Chapter  29:  Scientific Realism and Economics Download PDF
Chapter  30:  Realism and Theories of Truth Download PDF
Chapter  31:  Realism and Metaphysics Download PDF
Chapter  32:  Mathematical Realism and Naturalism Download PDF
Chapter  33:  Scientific Realism and Epistemology Download PDF
Chapter  34:  Natural Kinds for the Scientific Realist Download PDF
Index Download PDF
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