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Peter Godfrey-Smith's Theory and Reality: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science has just been released in a secodn edition. As he is one of the leading Philscis out there, and writes very well (His Other Minds was a NYT bestseller) I can recommend it. I have taught from the first edition.


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An old classic is Karl Popper, The Logic of Scientific Discovery, which is highly influential, though in my view over-long and contains too much pointless formalism. It features Popper's presentation of the view that science is primarily about falsifying, not confirming, theories. Another frequently referred to text is Thomas Kuhn's The Structure of ...


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I would get a general lay of the land first before jumping into reading sources, you will benefit more from them when you have at least a vague idea of how they fit into the big picture. Some textbook recommendations can be found on Leiter Reports. Also LMU and UC Berkeley have helpful orientation pages. SEP has a number of relevant articles with extensive ...


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I'll say up front that it is foolish to enter this particular debate without acknowledging that almost all lines of argument therein are deeply and inherently prejudicial. People like Hitchens are not neutral, curious philosophers seeking out deeper understanding; they are pundits with a definite political agenda, largely incapable of working with (much less ...


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'Best' is a value judgement, and science is not geared to give knowledge about human values. If you ask on what 'scientific' grounds they have determined that science is the 'best' source of knowledge, you'll get: incoherent ramblings or elliptical logic overt statements of belief scoffs, sneers, or snide remarks What you will not get (In my experience) is ...


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On page 39 of "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions" (2nd ed., 1970), Kuhn writes: "Throughout the eighteenth century those scientists who tried to derive the observed motion of the moon from Newton's laws of motion and gravitation consistently failed to do so. As a result, some of them suggested replacing the inverse square law with a law ...


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This question takes some untangling, and the untangling I'm inclined to do will strike some people the wrong way, mostly for the wrong reasons. There's too much politics in science these days. But at any rate... First: 'Scientism' is a particular thing-in-itself that is only tangentially related to any particular philosophy of science. Scientism is a type of ...


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General philosophy of science I'll leave to others to answer, I studied this years ago and we used the Curd and Cover book which contains lots of classic papers and excerpts etc. No idea if this has been superseded but it certainly covers the ground. Re the subsidiary question on philosophy of physics - as introductory texts I would recommend Dean Rickles's ...


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I would highly recommend Michael Polanyi's Personal Knowledge. Polanyi is not terribly well known, but he brings a very interesting perspective, inasmuch as he was a chemist before he moved to philosophy; so he knows science from the inside. I got into him after reading an excerpt in graduate school and thinking, “Yes, that's how science actually works.” (To ...


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TLDR: 1 yes, unsupported assumptions are necessary to establish knowledge. 2 this is not "faith" as the word is usually used in religious debates. What you are describing here is the Munchausen trilemma, the idea that in order to prove anything, to justify any knowledge, our set of proofs must be either: circular infinite (a case you don't mention,...


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The answer above does not take a philosophical approach, so I'll try. In this context, it seems to me that in the case of Did Hitchens personally research the Big Bang? what you should be thinking about is that has the evidence for that belief has been accumulated in a scientific fashion? That meaning, whether the evidence went through the scientific method ...


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