Science as a Communicative Mode of Life

In Torkild Thellefsen and Bent Sørensen (ed.), The Peirce Quote Book: Charles Sanders Peirce in His Own Words. Boston/Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. pp. 437-442 (2014)
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"I do not call the solitary studies of a single man a science. It is only when a group of men, more or less in intercommunication, are aiding and stimulating one another by their understanding of a particular group of studies as outsiders cannot understand them, that call their life a science”. (MS 1334: 12–13, 1905). This beautiful quotation from Charles S. Peirce comes from his “Lecture I to the 
Adirondack Summer School 1905” and was catalogued as MS 1334 (Robin 1967). In 1986 Kenneth L. Ketner chose fifteen pages (7–22) of the Notebook I of these 
lectures to represent Peirce’s conception of science in the volume Classical American Philosophy (Stuhr 1987: 46–48). “The Nature of Science” was the 
appropriate title assigned to that selection, which up to then had been almost unknown to the majority of Peirce scholars. Sara Barrena translated the piece 
into Spanish in 1996 (Barrena 1996: 1435–1440) and we chose the quotation 
above as the motto for our then incipient group of Peirce scholars in the Spanish- speaking world because it so finely expressed the aim of our undertaking. Against 
the traditional image of the philosopher as a solitary thinker near the stove, 
we wanted, following Peirce, to encourage cooperation and communication 
between our researchers not only as something useful, but as something essential for the real development of science. 

Author's Profile

Jaime Nubiola
Universidad de Navarra


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