Chapter

The Web of Knowledge

in What Did the Romans Know?

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780226471143
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226471150 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226471150.003.0001
The Web of Knowledge

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This book suggests an argument that science is best understood to be happening in the middle of things. It employs the historical study of a very remote period as a focal field to pick up on three prominent threads in recent debates: historical, intellectual, and experiential contexts of fact-making. The frequent recurrence of Stoic and Platonic themes reflects their broad predominance in the period. Then, it investigates how the world that the Romans saw themselves as occupying hung together as a coherent whole, stressing the very powerful and productive observational rationality at the heart of Roman approaches to nature. Moreover, it utilizes the historical material to directly engage the philosophical question about whether and how historicized scientific objects can be seen as real, and what that means for both philosophy and history. Finally, an overview of the chapters included in this book is given.

Keywords: science; philosophy; history; fact-making; Romans

Chapter.  8949 words. 

Subjects: History of Science and Technology

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