N-rays and the semantic view of scientific progress
Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A
Scientific progress, Goal of inquiry, Value problem, Alexander Bird
This paper challenges a recent argument of Bird’s, which involves imagining that Réné Blondlot’s belief in N-rays was true, in favour of the view that scientific progress should be understood in terms of knowledge rather than truth. By considering several variants of Bird’s thought-experiment, it shows that the semantic account of progress cannot be so easily vanquished. A key possibility is that justification is only instrumental in, and not partly constitutive of, progress.
Copyright © 2008 Elsevier Ltd
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Rowbottom, D. P. (2008). Intersubjective corroboration. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A, 39(2), 277-278. doi: 10.1016/j.shpsa.2008.03.010