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Idealization and the Aims of Science

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2018.03.13 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Angela Potochnik, Idealization and the Aims of Science, University of Chicago Press, 2017, 252 pp., $45.00, ISBN 9780226507057. Reviewed by Gregory J. Morgan, Stevens Institute of Technology In this well-crafted book, Angela Potochnik argues that idealization is central to science and, relatedly, that science does not track truth directly but rather aims to support human cognitive and practical ends. She begins with two assumptions: (a) that science is the project of cognitively limited human beings and (b) that the world investigated by scientists is incredibly complex. From these assumptions, she argues that a science practiced by limited humans results in "widespread idealization" (2). Her theoretical approach, an outgrowth of naturalized epistemology, aims to reflect how science is actually practiced. That being said, it is not merely a descriptive approach, but a normative approach based on science. . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

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