Paradigms and Rules

Assuming a paradigm’s community desires consistency, their general paradigm will dictate specific rules for the community’s research (i.e., means for investigation and standards for evaluation; Kuhn, Scientific Revolutions 43, 48, 94; cf. Achinstein 413; Thiselton 711). Yet, these rules do not themselves provide coherence to a given tradition of normal science (Kuhn, Scientific Revolutions 44). […]

“Normal” Science

Within a given, normal-scientific tradition, the reigning paradigm directs research by suggesting which experiments and data are relevant to resolving a given problem and which are irrelevant (Kuhn 18, 24, 34). The paradigm also guides new and more specific theory articulation, and the paradigm permits practitioners in a given field to dispense with rearticulating the […]

Maturing Scientific Communities

As young scientists routinely obtain, through education, their introduction into mature, scientific communities, young scientific communities may require some time to mature and develop their communities’ paradigms (Kuhn 11). During this early phase, nascent scientific communities typically involve different schools of thought that seek “relevant” facts somewhat individualistically according to whatever paradigms they find most […]

Paradigms and Communities

In Thomas Kuhn’s analysis, new paradigms attract adherents from older alternatives by producing sufficiently unprecedented achievements, but these new paradigms still leave work to be done because of the new problems that they create or the new issues they suggest (Kuhn 10, 17–18, 80). Yet, the community that accepts a given paradigm implicitly judges the […]

Kuhn and Popper

Thomas Kuhn acknowledges that Sir Karl Popper’s work earlier in the twentieth century somewhat anticipated his own view of science (Kuhn, Essential Tension 267). Nevertheless, Kuhn also identifies two meaningful distinctions that his work has vis-à-vis Popper’s (Worrall 66–71). First, Kuhn perceives favorably deep commitments to normal scientific traditions because these traditions (1) encourage substantive […]

Kuhn and Kant

In the later half of the twentieth-century, Thomas Kuhn reappropriated and significantly adapted Immanuel Kant’s qualifications of empirical science (Kuhn, Essential Tension 336–37; Kuhn, Since Structure 103–104, 264). First published in 1962, Kuhn’s Structure of Scientific Revolutions replaced Kant’s transcendental truths of reason with theoretical ‘paradigms’ (cf. Kuhn, Since Structure 264). This understanding puts Kuhn […]