By Peter T. Manicas
This advent to the philosophy of social technological know-how presents an unique belief of the duty and nature of social inquiry. Peter Manicas discusses the function of causality noticeable within the actual sciences and provides a reassessment of the matter of clarification from a realist viewpoint. He argues that the basic objective of thought in either the typical and social sciences isn't, opposite to common opinion, prediction and regulate, or the reason of occasions (including behaviour). in its place, concept goals to supply an realizing of the approaches which, jointly, produce the contingent results of expertise. supplying a bunch of concrete illustrations and examples of serious rules and matters, this obtainable publication should be of curiosity to scholars of the philosophy of social technological know-how, and social scientists from a variety of disciplines.
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Extra info for A Realist Philosophy of Social Science: Explanation and Understanding
We can produce well-established theories about reproduction, health and the bio-chemical properties of bananas. Of course, our kinsmen may not be convinced. Moreover, one might argue that their belief system is to be preferred. Perhaps it has allowed them to reproduce a pleasant and just life. ) So we might not wish to interfere with our “scientific” ideas and we may hope that they might be able to preserve the way of life that they prefer. 7 This is all quite consistent with saying that they are wrong about bananas.
Likewise, the general mathematical laws of motion satisfied by bodies moving through empty space (or under other conditions) are essential properties of such bodies, without which they could be bodies as we have known them. Examples of this kind could be multiplied without limit. (1984: 14) We need some new language to get at what is going on here. ” Rather, causal laws look more like: “By virtue of its intrinsic structure S, C phi’s when C is triggered,” where phi-ing refers to the activity of the mechanism C.
It exists, but perhaps only or usually in a less than pure form. While if our theory is true, NaCl must dissolve in H2 O, if on some occasion, the salt did not dissolve when put in water, we would almost certainly assume that what we put in water was not salt or that there was something about either the salt or the water which prevented it dissolving. If sufficiently sophisticated, we might suggest that the solution was super-saturated, perhaps because it was too cold. Indeed, in our world there is contingency, but in a world where there was only contingency, there would be no stability.
A Realist Philosophy of Social Science: Explanation and Understanding by Peter T. Manicas