The Miracle of Monism

John Dupré

in Processes of Life

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199691982
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738111 | DOI:
The Miracle of Monism

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This chapter defends a pluralistic view of science: the various projects of enquiry that fall under the general rubric of science share neither a methodology nor a subject matter. Ontologically, it is argued that sciences need have nothing in common beyond an antipathy to the supernatural. Epistemically one central virtue is defended, empiricism, meaning just that scientific knowledge must ultimately be answerable to experience. Prima facie science is as diverse as the world it studies; and rejection of this prima facie diversity in favour of a spurious aspiration to unity is grounded in a priori assumption not experience. Disunity, however, does not mean disconnectedness, and the connections between different areas of knowledge are an important theme in the book.

Keywords: scientific pluralism; monism; naturalism; empiricism; unity of science

Chapter.  10466 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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