New Meetup: Scientific realism vs. anti-realism, Wed., April 29

From: Peter
Sent on: Monday, April 20, 2009 9:56 PM
Announcing a new Meetup for The Berkeley Philosophy Meetup Group!
What: Scientific realism vs. anti-realism
When: Wednesday, April 29, 2009, from 8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Where: The Beanery, 2925 College Ave., Berkeley
Price: $2.00 per person

Scientific realism is the view that the aim of science is to discover the truth about the world. Scientific anti-realism is the opposing view that the aim of science is to come up with theories and models that are empirically useful for making predictions, but are not themselves to be taken as being "the truth" about the world.

Here are the readings:

1. Howard Sankey on scientific realism:
Scientific realism and the rationality of science
http://books.google.com/books?id=cnR4H4ICHjUC&pg=PA11
Read chapter 1.

2. Bas van Fraassen's "constructive empiricism" (anti-realist):
The Scientific Image
http://books.google.com/books?id=VLz2F1zMr9QC&pg=PA1
Read chapter 1 and as much as Google Books will allow of chapter 2.

3. Nancy Cartwright's "simulacrum account" (anti-realist):
How the laws of physics lie
http://books.google.com/books?id=lIQKFs0_s18C&pg=PA1
Read the Introduction.
Also read Essay 8, which is available here:
http://phps.snu.ac.kr/bbs/data/seminar_underPS/4th_Cartwright(1983).pdf

4. Arthur Fine's "natural ontological attitude" (neither realist nor anti-realist):
The shaky game
http://books.google.com/books?id=VwmDQrq1ASoC&pg=PA112
http://books.google.com/books?id=VC97OSoiMOkC&pg=PA112
http://books.google.com/books?id=WBd2nNJUbxIC&pg=PA112
Read chapter 7. With three versions on Google Books, you should be able to get every page of the chapter.
Also read chapter 8, available here:
http://www.sfu.ca/~jillmc/Fine%20article.pdf

Here is the web page to RSVP and to talk about this meeting:
http://www.meetup.com/Berkeley-philosophy/calendar/10223768/

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