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Kuhn and Lakatos

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A summary of Kuhn's structure of scientific revolutions modified by Lakatos.

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  • Thanks for the point at Luc Boltanski ... i'll check him out ...

    for me, I'm enjoying Ton van Rheehan's recommendations re luhmann and dirk baecker (particularly in terms of the difference that makes a difference, over time) ...
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  • Paul, thanks! I think the question is 'used for what?'... a paradigm is a way of organising things that serves particular interests (aka power/knowledge practices), so while I certainly think that publishing can serve to help postpone awareness of crisis, the real work is, I think, finding the differences that make the difference and amplifying those. On this subject, I am finding Luc Boltanski's work - the new spirit of capitalism - very interesting...
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  • NIce ... I read your post in STW re paradigms ...

    what are your thoughts on the role of publishing for maintaining a paradigm, beyond its use by date ...
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Kuhn and Lakatos

  1. 1. Old Theory: well established, many followers, politically powerful, well understood, many anomalies New Theory: few followers, untested, new concepts/techniques, accounts for anomalies, asks new questionsCrisis: Weight of accumulated anomalies, No agreement on how anomalies are to be dealt with, doubts arise. Hard core assumptions challenged. Anomalies: Not all expectations are borne out, Some anomalies lead to further discoveries, Some simply ignored. Troublesome anomalies: Challenge key theoretical concepts, Resist solutions, Inhibit application of theory Normal Science: Stability, Determination of significant facts, Matching facts with theories, Articulation of theories (refinement and extension), “puzzle -solving” neither tests nor confirms its theories. Driven by a paradigm: Commonly held set of beliefs, procedures, techniques. Agreement upon questions of import, upon what counts as a solution, and upon standards of evaluation. Hard core assumptions distinguished from auxiliary hypotheses. Immature Science: No prevailing school of thought, Various disparate theories, Competition Immature Science Normal Science Anomalies Crisis Revolution Alternative research programs: in addressing anomalies, some programs are generative of new facts, and some degenerative (i.e. post-rationalising others’ facts but not generating new ones). Determining which is which takes time… Kuhn1 and Lakatos2 Copyright © Philip Boxer 2007 1 - Kuhn, T. S. (1962). The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, University of Chicago. 2 - Lakatos, I. (1970). Falsification and the methodology of scientific research programmes. Criticism and the Growth of Knowledge. I. Lakatos and A. Musgrave. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press: 91-196.

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