An Analysis of the Demarcation Problem in Philosophy of Science and Its Application to Homeopathy

Flsf 1 (25):91-107 (2018)
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Abstract

This paper presents a preliminary analysis of homeopathy from the perspective of the demarcation problem in the philosophy of science. In this context, Popper, Kuhn and Feyerabend’s solution to the problem will be given respectively and their criteria will be applied to homeopathy, aiming to shed some light on the controversy over its scientific status. It then examines homeopathy under the lens of demarcation criteria to conclude that homeopathy is regarded as science by Feyerabend and is considered as pseudoscience by Popper and Kuhn. By offering adequate tools for the analysis of the foundations, structure and implications of homeopathy, demarcation issue can help to clarify this medical controversy. The main argument of this article is that a final decision on homeopathy, whose scientific status changes depending on the criteria of the philosophers mentioned, cannot be given.

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Alper Bilgehan Yardımcı
Pamukkale University

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