Results for 'Incommensurability'

179 found
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  1.  86
    Incommensurability in Population Ethics.Jacob Nebel - 2015 - Dissertation, University of Oxford
    Values are incommensurable when they cannot be measured on a single cardinal scale. Many philosophers suggest that incommensurability can help us solve the problems of population ethics. I agree. But some philosophers claim that populations bear incommensurable values merely because they contain different numbers of people, perhaps within some range. I argue that mere differences in how many people exist, even within some range, do not suffice for incommensurability. I argue that the intuitive neutrality of creating happy people (...)
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  2. Incommensurability and Cross-Language Communication.Xinli Wang - 2007 - Ashgate Publishing Ltd, England.
    Against the received translation-failure interpretation, this book presents a presuppositional interpretation of incommensurability, that is, the thesis of incommensurability as cross-language communication breakdown due to the incompatible metaphysical presuppositions underlying two competing presuppositional languages, such as scientific languages. This semantically sound, epistemologically well-established, and metaphysically profound interpretation not only affirms the tenability of the notion of incommensurability and confirms the reality of the phenomenon of incommensurability, but also makes some significant contributions to the discussion of many (...)
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  3. Incommensurability and the Bonfire of the Meta-Theories: Response to Mizrahi.Lydia Patton - 2015 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 4 (7):51-58.
    Scientists working within a paradigm must play by the rules of the game of that paradigm in solving problems, and that is why incommensurability arises when the rules of the game change. If we deny the thesis of the priority of paradigms, then there is no good argument for the incommensurability of theories and thus for taxonomic incommensurability, because there is no invariant way to determine the set of results provable, puzzles solvable, and propositions cogently formulable under (...)
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  4. Incommensurability.Muhammad Ali Khalidi - 1999 - In W. H. Newton-Smith (ed.), A Companion to Philosophy of Science. Blackwell. pp. 172-80.
    Along with “paradigm” and “scientific revolution,” “incommensurability” is one of the three most influential expressions associated with the “new philosophy of science” first articulated in the early 1960s by Thomas Kuhn and Paul Feyerabend. But, despite the fact that it has been widely discussed, opinions still differ widely as to the content and significance of the claim of incommensurability.
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  5. Incommensurability: An Overview.Howard Sankey - 1999 - Divinatio 10:135-48.
    Opening remarks delivered at "Incommensurability (and related matters)" conference, Hanover, June 1999.
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  6. Incommensurability as Vagueness: A Burden-Shifting Argument.Luke Elson - 2017 - Theoria 83 (4):341-363.
    Two options are ‘incommensurate’ when neither is better than the other, but they are not equally good. Typically, we will say that one option is better in some ways, and the other in others, but neither is better ‘all things considered’. It is tempting to think that incommensurability is vagueness—that it is (perhaps) indeterminate which is better—but this ‘vagueness view’ of incommensurability has not proven popular. I set out the vagueness view and its implications in more detail, and (...)
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  7. Incommensurability (and Incomparability).Ruth Chang - 2013 - In Hugh LaFollette (ed.), The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Blackwell. pp. 2591-2604.
    This encyclopedia entry urges what it takes to be correctives to common (mis)understandings concerning the phenomenon of incommensurability and incomparability and briefly outlines some of their philosophical upshots.
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  8. The Incommensurability Thesis.Howard Sankey - 1994 - Abingdon: Taylor and Francis.
    This book presents a critical analysis of the semantic incommensurability thesis of Thomas Kuhn and Paul Feyerabend. In putting forward the thesis of incommensurability, Kuhn and Feyerabend drew attention to complex issues concerning the phenomenon of conceptual change in science. They raised serious problems about the semantic and logical relations between the content of theories which deploy unlike systems of concepts. Yet few of the more extreme claims associated with incommensurability stand scrutiny. The argument of this book (...)
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  9. Incommensurability and Theory Change.Howard Sankey - 2011 - In Steven Hales (ed.), A Companion to Relativism. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 456-474.
    The paper explores the relativistic implications of the thesis of incommensurability. A semantic form of incommensurability due to semantic variation between theories is distinguished from a methodological form due to variation in methodological standards between theories. Two responses to the thesis of semantic incommensurability are dealt with: the first challenges the idea of untranslatability to which semantic incommensurability gives rise; the second holds that relations of referential continuity eliminate semantic incommensurability. It is then argued that (...)
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  10. Incommensurability.Howard Sankey - 2006 - In Sahotra Sarkar & Jessica Pfeifer (eds.), The Philosophy of Science: An Encyclopedia. Routledge. pp. 370-373.
    This is a short introductory discussion of the idea of incommensurability as it is used in the philosophy of science.
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  11. Incommensurable values.John Broome - 2000 - In Roger Crisp & Brad Hooker (eds.), Well-Being and Morality: Essays in Honour of James Griffin. Clarendon Press. pp. 21--38.
    Two options are incommensurate in value if neither is better than the other, and if a small improvement or worsening of one does not necessarily make it determinately better or worse than the other. If a person faces a sequence of choices between incommensurate options, she may end up with a worse options than she could have had, even though none of her choices are irrational. Yet it seems that rationality should save her from this bad outcome. This is the (...)
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  12.  71
    Incommensurability Tenet and Modern Theory of Gravity.Rinat M. Nugayev - 1989 - In Lev Bazhenov Azaria Polikarov (ed.), Cosmos,Physics,Philosophy. Russian Academy of Science. pp. 37-39.
    An apparent incommensurability of two leading gravitational paradigms (metric and nonmetric) is considered. It is conjectured that the application of neutral language of A.P. Lightman, D.L. Lee and Kip S. Thorne (“The Foundation of Theory of Gravitational Theories”. Phys. Rev. D 1973, vol.7, pp.3563-3572) can help to solve the theory –choice problem in principle. Key words: neutral language, theory choice, gravity.
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  13. Incommensurability: The Current State of Play.Howard Sankey - 1997 - Theoria 12 (3):425-445.
    The incommensurability thesis is the thesis that the content of some alternative scientific theories is incomparable due to translation failure between the vocabulary the theories employ. This paper presents an overview of the main issues which have arisen in the debate about incommensurability. It also briefly outlines a response to the thesis based on a modified causal theory of reference which allows change of reference subsequent to initial baptism, as well as a role to description in the determination (...)
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  14. Meta-Incommensurability Between Theories of Meaning: Chemical Evidence.Nicholas W. Best - 2015 - Perspectives on Science 23 (3):361-378.
    Attempting to compare scientific theories requires a philosophical model of meaning. Yet different scientific theories have at times—particularly in early chemistry—pre-supposed disparate theories of meaning. When two theories of meaning are incommensurable, we must say that the scientific theories that rely upon them are meta-incommensurable. Meta- incommensurability is a more profound sceptical threat to science since, unlike first-order incommensurability, it implies complete incomparability.
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  15. Incommensurability and Comparative Philosophy.Xinli Wang - 2018 - Philosophy East and West 68 (2):564-582.
    Comparative philosophy between two disparate cultural-philosophic traditions, such as Western and Chinese philosophy, has become a new trend of philosophical fashion in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Having learned from the past, contemporary comparative philosophers cautiously safeguard their comparative studies against two potential pitfalls, namely cultural universalism and cultural relativism. The Orientalism that assumed the superiority of the Occidental has become a memory of the past. The historical pendulum has apparently swung to the other extreme. The more recent (...)
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  16. Incommensurability and Demarcation.John T. Sanders - 1998 - In Dane R. Gordon & Józef Niznik (eds.), Criticism and Defense of Rationality in Contemporary Philosophy. Rodopi. pp. 65--83.
    If the term "relativism" is understood as relativists take it, everyone is a relativist. If, on the other hand, one understands "relativism" as absolutists do, no one really could consistently be a relativist, despite what they might think. As I hope to show, however, much of this positioning of persons and philosophies is foolish. It misses much that is important in philosophical discussion and focuses attention in directions that lead to dead ends.
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  17. Is Incommensurability Vagueness?John Broome - 1997 - In Ruth Chang (ed.), Incommensurability, Incomparability, and Practical Reason. Harvard University Press.
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  18. Incommensurability in Cognitive Guise.Muhammad Ali Khalidi - 1998 - Philosophical Psychology 11 (1):29 – 43.
    Philosophers and historians of science have made the claim that successive scientific theories are incommensurable, that is, that many or all of their concepts fail to coincide. This claim has been echoed by cognitive psychologists who have applied it to the successive conceptual schemes of young children, or of children and adults. This paper examines the psychological evidence for the claim and proposes ways of reinterpreting it which do not involve imputing incommensurability. An alternative approach to understanding conceptual change (...)
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  19. Incommensurability and the Best of All Possible Worlds.Stephen Grover - 1998 - The Monist 81 (4):648-668.
    In “The Best of All Possible Worlds” William E. Mann argues that some possible worlds are morally incommensurable with some others, because some choices are between incompatible alternatives that are themselves incommensurable. The best possible world must be better than, and hence commensurable with, every other world. So if anyone in the actual world ever faces a choice between incompatible alternatives that are morally incommensurable, this is not the best possible world. But it seems that some of us do, on (...)
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  20. Deontology, Incommensurability and the Arbitrary.Anthony Ellis - 1992 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 52 (4):855-875.
    The article tries to show that what is often called 'Moderate Deontology' is incoherent.
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  21. Incommensurability and Moral Value.Mark R. Reiff - 2014 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 13 (3):237-268.
    Some theorists believe that there is a plurality of values, and that in many circumstances these values are incommensurable, or at least incomparable. Others believe that all values are reducible to a single super-value, or that even if there is a plurality of irreducible values these values are commensurable. But I will argue that both sides have got it wrong. Values are neither commensurable nor incommensurable, at least not in the way most people think. We are free to believe in (...)
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  22. Incommensurable Goods, Alternative Possibilities, and the Self-Refutation of the Self-Refutation of Determinism.Michael Baur - 2005 - American Journal of Jurisprudence 50 (1):165-171.
    In his paper, "Free Choice, Incommensurable Goods and the Self-Refutation of Determinism,"' Joseph Boyle seeks to show how the argument for the self-refutation of determinism - first articulated over twenty-five years ago - is an argument whose force depends on (first) a proper understanding of just what free choice is, and (secondly) a proper understanding of how free choice is a principle of moral responsibility. According to Boyle, a person can make a genuinely free choice only if he is presented (...)
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  23. Incommensurability, Incomparability, and Practical Reason, Ruth Chang (Ed.), Harvard University Press, 1998, 303 Pages. [REVIEW]Adam Morton - 2000 - Economics and Philosophy 16 (1):147-174.
    review of Ruth Chang's collection in which I argue that the apparent agreements between the authors disguise underlying important differences.
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  24. Some Reflections on Experimental Incommensurability.Howard Sankey - 2008 - In Lena Soler, Howard Sankey & Paul Hoyningen-Huene (eds.), Rethinking Scientific Change and Theory Comparison. Dordrecht: Springer. pp. 341-347.
    This is a comment on Lena Soler's 'The Incommensurability of Experimental Practices'.
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  25. Can Kuhn’s Taxonomic Incommensurability Be an Image of Science?Seungbae Park - 2018 - In The Kuhnian Image of Science: Time for a Decisive Transformation? London: pp. 61–74.
    I criticize Kuhn’s (1962/1970) taxonomic incommensurability thesis as follows. (i) His argument for it is neither deductively sound nor inductively correct. (ii) It clashes with his account of scientific development that employs evolutionary theory. (iii) Even if two successive paradigms are taxonomically incommensurable, they have some overlapping theoretical claims, as selectivists point out. (iv) Since scientific revolutions were rare in the recent past, as historical optimists observe, they will also be rare in the future. Where scientific revolution is rare, (...)
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  26. Rationality, Relativism and Incommensurability.Howard Sankey - 1997 - Ashgate.
    This book concentrates on three topics: the problem of the semantic incommensurability of theories; the non-algorithmic character of rational scientific theory choice and naturalised accounts of the rationality of methodological change. The underlying aim is to show how the phenomenon of extensive conceptual and methodological variation in science need not give rise to a thorough-going epistemic or conceptual relativism.
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  27. Specialisation, Interdisciplinarity, and Incommensurability.Vincenzo Politi - 2017 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 31 (3):301-317.
    Incommensurability may be regarded as driving specialisation, on the one hand, and as posing some problems to interdisciplinarity, on the other hand. It may be argued, however, that incommensurability plays no role in either specialisation or interdisciplinarity. Scientific specialties could be defined as simply 'different' (that is, about different things), rather than 'incommensurable' (that is, competing for the explanation of the same phenomena). Interdisciplinarity could be viewed as the co- ordinated effort of scientists possessing complemetary and interlocking skills, (...)
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  28. Kuhn’s Incommensurability Thesis: What’s the Argument?Moti Mizrahi - 2015 - Social Epistemology 29 (4):361-378.
    In this paper, I argue that there is neither valid deductive support nor strong inductive support for Kuhn’s incommensurability thesis. There is no valid deductive support for Kuhn’s incommensurability thesis because, from the fact that the reference of the same kind terms changes or discontinues from one theoretical framework to another, it does not necessarily follow that these two theoretical frameworks are taxonomically incommensurable. There is no strong inductive support for Kuhn’s incommensurability thesis, since there are rebutting (...)
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  29. Incommensurability, Incomparability, and Practical Reason.Ruth Chang - 1997 - Cambridge, MA, USA: Harvard.
    Can quite different values be rationally weighed against one another? Can the value of one thing always be ranked as greater than, equal to, or less than the value of something else? If not, when do we find commensurability and comparability unavailable? What are the moral and legal implications? In this book, philosophers address these questions.
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  30. Against Constitutive Incommensurability or Buying and Selling Friends.Ruth Chang - 2001 - Noûs 35 (s1):33 - 60.
    Recently, some of the leading proponents of the view that there is widespread incommensurability among goods have suggested that the incommensurability of some goods is a constitutive feature of the goods themselves. So, for example, a friendship and a million dollars are incommensurable because it is part of what it is to be a friendship that it be incommensurable with money. According to these ‘constitutive incommensurabilists’ incommensurability follows from the very nature of certain goods. In this paper, (...)
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  31. Value Incomparability and Incommensurability.Ruth Chang - 2015 - In Iwao Hirose & Jonas Olson (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Value Theory. Oxford University Press.
    This introductory article describes the phenomena of incommensurability and incomparability, how they are related, and why they are important. Since incomparability is the more significant phenomenon, the paper takes that as its focus. It gives a detailed account of what incomparability is, investigates the relation between the incomparability of values and the incomparability of alternatives for choice, distinguishes incomparability from the related phenomena of parity, indeterminacy, and noncomparability, and, finally, defends a view about practical justification that vindicates the importance (...)
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  32. The Demise of the Incommensurability Thesis.Howard Sankey - 2016 - In Moti Mizrahi (ed.), The Kuhnian Image of Science: Time for a Decisive Transformation? London and New York: Rowman and Littlefield. pp. 75-91.
    The paper briefly reviews the main formulations of the incommensurability thesis by Feyerabend and Kuhn, as well as the main criticisms leveled against it. The question is then raised of whether there is a "phenomenon" of incommensurability that has been "discovered". It is argued that there is no such phenomenon.
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  33.  75
    Emotions and Incommensurable Moral Concepts.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2001 - Philosophy 76 (4):585-604.
    Many authors have argued that emotions serve an epistemic role in our moral practice. Some argue that this epistemic connection is so strong that creatures who do not share our affective nature will be unable to grasp our moral concepts. I argue that even if this sort of incommensurability does result from the role of affect in morality, incommensurability does not in itself entail relativism. In any case, there is no reason to suppose that one must share our (...)
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  34.  36
    Coping with Incommensurable Pursuits: Rorty, Berlin, and the Confucian-Daoist Complementarity.Chenyang Li - 2009 - In Yong Huang (ed.), Rorty, Pragmatism, and Confucianism—with Responses by Richard Rorty. pp. 195-209.
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  35. A Critique of the Translational Approach to Incommensurability.Xinli Wang - 1998 - Prima Philosophia 11 (3):293-306.
    According to the received translational interpretation of incommensurability, incommensurability is viewed as untranslatability due to radical variance of meaning or reference of the terms in two competing scientific languages. The author argues that the translational approach to incommensurability does not effectively clarify the concept of incommensurability. Since it cannot provide us with tenable, integrated concept of incommensurability, it should be rejected.
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  36. Truth-Value Gaps, Ontological Commitments, and Incommensurability (Doctoral Dissertation).Xinli Wang - 1998 - Dissertation, The University of Connecticut
    According to the accepted translation-failure interpretation, the problem of incommensurability involves the nature of the meaning-referential relation between scientific languages. The incommensurability thesis is that some competing scientific languages are mutually untranslatable due to the radical variance of meaning or/and reference of the terms they employ. I argue that this interpretation faces many difficulties and cannot give us a tenable, coherent, and integrated notion of incommensurability. It has to be rejected. ;On the basis of two case studies, (...)
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  37. Why the Semantic Incommensurability Thesis is Self-Defeating.Michael A. Bishop - 1991 - Philosophical Studies 63 (3):343 - 356.
    What factors are involved in the resolution of scientific disputes? What factors make the resolution of such disputes rational? The traditional view confers an important role on observation statements that are shared by proponents of competing theories. Rival theories make incompatible (sometimes contradictory) observational predictions about a particular situation, and the prediction made by one theory is borne out while the prediction made by the other is not. Paul Feyerabend, Thomas Kuhn, and Paul Churchland have called into question this account (...)
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  38. A Reply to James Marcum’s “What’s the Support for Kuhn’s Incommensurability Thesis?”.Moti Mizrahi - 2015 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 4 (11):21-24.
    I reply to James Marcum’s “What’s the Support for Kuhn’s Incommensurability Thesis? A Response to Mizrahi and Patton”.
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  39. Taxonomy, Truth-Value Gaps and Incommensurability: A Reconstruction of Kuhn's Taxonomic Interpretation of Incommensurability.Xinli Wang - 2002 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 33 (3):465-485.
    Kuhn's alleged taxonomic interpretation of incommensurability is grounded on an ill defined notion of untranslatability and is hence radically incomplete. To supplement it, I reconstruct Kuhn's taxonomic interpretation on the basis of a logical-semantic theory of taxonomy, a semantic theory of truth-value, and a truth-value conditional theory of cross-language communication. According to the reconstruction, two scientific languages are incommensurable when core sentences of one language, which have truth values when considered within its own context, lack truth values when considered (...)
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  40. What is Wrong with Nimbys? Renewable Energy, Landscape Impacts and Incommensurable Values.Anne Schwenkenbecher - 2017 - Environmental Values 26 (6):711-732.
    Local opposition to infrastructure projects implementing renewable energy (RE) such as wind farms is often strong even if state-wide support for RE is strikingly high. The slogan “Not In My BackYard” (NIMBY) has become synonymous for this kind of protest. This paper revisits the question of what is wrong with NIMBYs about RE projects and how to best address them. I will argue that local opponents to wind farm (and other RE) developments do not necessarily fail to contribute their fair (...)
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  41.  36
    A Comparison of Derrida and Davidson on Incommensurable Scientific Languages.Terence Rajivan Edward - manuscript
    Donald Davidson denies that there are incommensurable scientific languages: languages which cannot be translated into our contemporary language. What about Derrida? What is his perspective on this matter? This paper presents a broadly Derridean objection to Susan Carey’s argument for incommensurability.
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  42. Dignity at the Limit: Jean-Luc Nancy on the Possibility of Incommensurable Worth.Bryan Lueck - 2016 - Continental Philosophy Review 49 (3):309-323.
    Dignity, according to some recent arguments, is a useless concept, giving vague expression to moral intuitions that are better captured by other, better defined concepts. In this paper, I defend the concept of dignity against such skeptical arguments. I begin with a description of the defining features of the Kantian conception of dignity. I then examine one of the strongest arguments against that conception, advanced by Arthur Schopenhauer in On the Basis of Morality. After considering some standard accounts of dignity, (...)
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  43.  74
    Rozum a wiara: Problem separacji dyscyplin.Grzegorz Bugajak - 2007 - Studia Philosophiae Christianae 43 (2):132-148.
    The paper remains and reinforces a viewpoint that science and religion (theology) are methodologically and epistemologically independent. However, it also suggests that this independence can be overcome if a "third party" is taken into account, that is - philosophy. Such possibility seems to follow from the thesis of incommensurability and the thesis of underdetermination formulated and analyzed in current philosophy of science.
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  44.  18
    Epistemicism and Commensurability.Paul Forrester - manuscript
    Abstract: The topic for this paper is the phenomenon of apparent value incommensurability—two goods are apparently incommensurable when it appears that neither is better than the other nor are they equally good. I shall consider three theories of this phenomenon. Indeterminists like Broome (1997) hold that the phenomenon is due to vagueness: when two goods appear to be incommensurable, this owes to the fact that “better than” is vague. Incommensurabilists like Chang (2002) hold that some goods appear to be (...)
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  45. Drawing the Line: Rational Cognitive Therapy, Information, and Boundary Issues.William Angelette - manuscript
    It has been claimed that cognitive therapists endorse sets of uplifting beliefs BECAUSE the client feels better believing them: not because they lead towards greater verisimilitude, a purported cognitivists’ hallmark of rational choice. Since standard cognitive therapists sometimes ask us to choose sets of beliefs that interpret evidence on the basis of greater individual happiness (all other things being equal), this suggests that the basis of choice goes beyond rationality. I contend that the case against the rationality of cognitive therapy (...)
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  46. The Kuhnian Image of Science: Time for a Decisive Transformation?Moti Mizrahi (ed.) - 2018 - London: Rowman & Littlefield.
    More than 50 years after the publication of Thomas Kuhn’s seminal book, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, this volume assesses the adequacy of the Kuhnian model in explaining certain aspects of science, particularly the social and epistemic aspects of science. One argument put forward is that there are no good reasons to accept Kuhn’s incommensurability thesis, according to which scientific revolutions involve the replacement of theories with conceptually incompatible ones. Perhaps, therefore, it is time for another “decisive transformation in (...)
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  47.  72
    Il Problema Dell'Incommensurabilita Delle Teorie Scientifiche.Howard Sankey - 1997 - Nuova Secondaria 5:61-66.
    This is an Italian translation of a lecture on incommensurability given at the University of Genoa.
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  48. Borderline Cases and the Collapsing Principle.Luke Elson - 2014 - Utilitas 26 (1):51-60.
    John Broome has argued that value incommensurability is vagueness, by appeal to a controversial about comparative indeterminacy. I offer a new counterexample to the collapsing principle. That principle allows us to derive an outright contradiction from the claim that some object is a borderline case of some predicate. But if there are no borderline cases, then the principle is empty. The collapsing principle is either false or empty.
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  49. Unification and Revolution: A Paradigm for Paradigms.Nicholas Maxwell - 2014 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 45 (1):133-149.
    Incommensurability was Kuhn’s worst mistake. If it is to be found anywhere in science, it would be in physics. But revolutions in theoretical physics all embody theoretical unification. Far from obliterating the idea that there is a persisting theoretical idea in physics, revolutions do just the opposite: they all actually exemplify the persisting idea of underlying unity. Furthermore, persistent acceptance of unifying theories in physics when empirically more successful disunified rivals can always be concocted means that physics makes a (...)
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  50. Kuhn, Pedagogy, and Practice: A Local Reading of Structure.Lydia Patton - 2018 - In Moti Mizrahi (ed.), The Kuhnian Image of Science: Time for a Decisive Transformation? Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield.
    Moti Mizrahi has argued that Thomas Kuhn does not have a good argument for the incommensurability of successive scientific paradigms. With Rouse, Andersen, and others, I defend a view on which Kuhn primarily was trying to explain scientific practice in Structure. Kuhn, like Hilary Putnam, incorporated sociological and psychological methods into his history of science. On Kuhn’s account, the education and initiation of scientists into a research tradition is a key element in scientific training and in his explanation of (...)
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