Scientific Worldviews as Promises of Science and Problems of Philosophy of Science

Centaurus 59 (3):189 - 203 (2017)
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The aim of this paper is to show that global scientific promises aka “scientific world-conceptions” have an interesting history that should be taken into account also for contemporary debates. I argue that the prototypes of many contemporary philosophical positions concerning the role of science in society can already be found in the philosophy of science of the 1920s and 1930s. First to be mentioned in this respect is the Scientific World-Conception of the Vienna Circle (The Manifesto) that promised to contribute to the realization of an enlightened, rational and science-oriented society and culture. The Manifesto was not the only „scientific world-conception“ that philosophers and scientists put forward in the 1920s. Also the scientific world-conception of the philosopher and physicist Moritz Schlick, and the Weltanschauung of Sigmund Freud deserve to be mentioned. Still other examples of are Carnap’s Scientific Humanism and the project of The International Encyclopedia of Unified Science which was related to American pragmatism as well, as is shown by Charles W. Morris and others. Forgotten for a long time, since the beginning of the 21rst century, at least some of the Viennese projects are reconsidered in a new wave of „socially engaged philosophy of science”.
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First archival date: 2015-11-21
Latest version: 4 (2018-05-23)
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