The Sociological Challenge

Nicholas Jardine

in The Scenes of Inquiry

Published in print September 2000 | ISBN: 9780198250395
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191681288 | DOI:
The Sociological Challenge

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This chapter considers other strategies for the legitimation of methods and beliefs whose prevalence and effectiveness cast doubt on the primacy of calibration against precedents and standards as arbitrator of methods and practices in the sciences. It looks at recent findings in the sociology and social history of the sciences that suggest that effective methods in securing consensuses in the sciences are generally neither calibrated nor such that they would survive genuine attempts at calibration. The chapter first considers a direct attack on the prevalence of genuine calibration. Then it looks into two sociological approaches to the study of closure of debate in the sciences: interest theory and network theory. Both theories entail major roles in the formation of consensus in the sciences for strategies of appeal to literary and aesthetic sensibilities.

Keywords: appeal to literary; aesthetic sensibilities; interest theory; network theory; legitimation; calibration

Chapter.  9533 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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