Download PDF by Noretta Koertge: A House Built on Sand: Exposing Postmodernist Myths About

By Noretta Koertge

Cultural critics say that "science is politics by means of different means," arguing that the result of clinical inquiry are profoundly formed via the ideological agendas of robust elites. They base their claims on ancient case reports purporting to teach the systematic intrusion of sexist, racist, capitalist, colonialist, and/or expert pursuits into the very content material of technology. during this hard-hitting choice of essays, individuals provide crisp and distinctive opinions of case reports provided by means of the cultural critics as facts that medical effects let us know extra approximately social context than they do concerning the flora and fauna. Pulling no punches, they determine a number of crude genuine error (e.g. that Newton by no means played any experiments) and egregious mistakes of omission, comparable to the try and clarify the gradual improvement of fluid dynamics completely by way of gender bias. the place there are beneficial properties of a unsuitable account, or whatever to be discovered from it, they don't hesitate to assert so. Their aim is shoddy scholarship.
Comprising new essays through exclusive students of heritage, philosophy, and technology, this ebook increases a full of life debate to a brand new point of seriousness.

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Not surprisingly, the contribution of Science Studies to exploring one set of questions that philosophers have neglected—the questions about values—has thus been limited. Yet given the pronounced emphasis on the social, one might think that recent work in Science Studies would have at least supplied tools for addressing the second, the issues concerning the ways in which social structures shape research. Any such hope is doomed to disappointment. It is time for confession. ” I had to make up (guess) a lot of my own sociology.

I had to make up (guess) a lot of my own sociology. This was not negligence. There was no theoretical source to which I could turn for guidance about the character of the causal processes that affect research. To be sure, there are “case studies,” investigations that deploy “folk” categories, like the ones I employ, but there is no systematic body of theory that would identify major causal factors—such as one might obtain from a sociologist of criminal behavior if one were interested in the social causes of crime.

This strikes me as terribly wrong. 48 of gibbons, chimpanzees, seals, and dolphins as being conspecific with opossums (they all are mammals, of course, but there the similarities end). Shapin and Schaffer want to understand an important episode in the birth of modern science, and even though they may have gone awry because of their fascination with Dogma 2, it would be uncharitable not to see that their work corrects some of the overrationalistic tendencies of earlier accounts and that it may point to a future story that does justice to both clusters of ideas.

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