Institute of Philosophy
of the Russian Academy of Sciences




  2015, Volume 45, Number 3
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2015, Volume 45, Number 3

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Epistemology & Philosophy of Science

2015, Volume 45, Number 3

 

CONTENTS

EDITORIAL


Ilya Kasavin. How Is Political Philosophy of Science Possible?

The article is dedicated dedicated to the analysis of new agenda in the philosophy of science and technology that might be dubbed a “political turn”. It consists in the problematizing science from the point of its cognitive autonomy; independence from history and culture; ethnic, gender and confession neutrality; disinterest in property and power. There are those concepts emerge like “science economy”, “academical capitalism”, “techno-science”, “pop-science”, “science as public good”, “fraud science” that reflect the changing social status of science. The main argument confronts modernity and postmodernity, which in Russian tradition takes form of contrasting the classical world view with the non_classical one. Nowadays science can hardly be studied disregarding its locus within the political system. The means of internal and external science management gain prior significance. All this dramatically transforms the very disciplinary core of science. In the article, the presuppositions and consequences of the political turn are traced and problematized.

Key words: philosophy of science and technology, political turn, academical capitalism, public intellectuals, techno_science, pop_science, science as public good, science economy, cognitive democracy. 

 


PANEL DISCUSSION


Karen Momdzhyan. Nomothetic Cognition in Social Sciences and the Humanities

In his paper Karen Momdzhyan defends the approach according to which the character of social and human sciences is about nomothetic. The author connects the need for nomothetic procedures with the existence of objective, necessary and universally recurring relations of social life, which turn it into a law-governed process in spite of the existence of free human will. He builds his argument on the scheme of the nomothetic cognition vs. the ideographic cognition. The nomothetic cognition searches for what is most general and common behind various events whereas the ideographic cognition concentrates on the analysis of what is particular. He argues against the postmodernist attempts to introduce only ideographic research paradigm into cultural and human studies.

Key words: social theory, nomothetic method, free will, values, social dynamics, regularities of social development.

 

Vladimir Krzhevov. On the Specific Character of the Methods of Social Sciences  

Alexander Nikiforov. On the Specific Character of Humanitarian Knowledge 

Возможен ли аномальный социомонизм?

Alexander Antonovski. Is Anomalous Sociomonism Possible?  

Alexandra Argamakova. The Terminology of neo$Kantianism is Obsolete

Karen Momdzhyan. Reply to Critics

 


EPISTEMOLOGY AND COGNITION


Alexander Ruser. Perspectives of and Challenges for a Social Philosophy of Science: Highlighting the Challenges

The role of scientific knowledge in general and social science knowledge in particularis changing in emerging and advanced knowledge societies. Science is becoming more important in identifying and framing social challenges and providing 'suitable and feasible' solution to decision-makers. Yet, scientific authority is increasingly challenged and contested. This increased socialsignificance of scientific knowledge claims call for an elaborate social philosophy of science. However any attempt to develop a theoretical framework for a social philosophy of science has to face three challenges: (1) an increased challenging of scientific authority,

(2)  the need for interdisciplinarity to cope with ever more complex problems and

(3)  to elaborate on a social epistemology and/ or social ontology respectively.  

Key words: social philosophy of science, scientific authority, interdisciplinary, epistemology, ontology.

 

Vadim Rozin. An Analysis of Real Cognition as a Condition for Resolving the Controversy between Constructivists and Realists

The article discusses the dispute between constructivists and realists, which is claimed to be losing its relevance. The author tries to show that the presuppositions of the dispute relate to the ancient culture, where the ideal objects first appeared and where the question of their relation to the real world was first raised. In the history of philosophy these relations were comprehended differently, and as a result two opposing views were developed – realism and constructivism. The author argues that in order to get away from the ineffectiveness of the opposition between these views one needs to turn to the methodological analysis of the real cognitive activity. In the process of discussing how this turn could be possible the author introduces the notions of ideal object, objectification, diagram, the reality of object ontology, the cycle of the development a new phenomenon along with two kinds of phenomena – the natural phenomena (in the sense of the first nature) and the social phenomena.

In the final part of the article the author offers a conceptualization of the Internet as a hand-made and mental creation of man, on the one hand, and as a natural phenomenon on the other. It is argued that the Internet exists not only as a newly created «socio_technical body» of man. In the situation of the present crisis it also allows us to maintain and reproduce the social and political life. As a result, it is claimed that the reality of the Internet could be considered both constructive and existential.

The author concludes that if we understand the processes of construction and of natural existence not merely as two oppositions associated with one phenomenon, but as two complementary aspects of real human activities, the dispute between constructivists and realists becomes meaningless in the cognitive as well as in the practical perspective.

Key words: constructivism, realism, activity, cognition, upgrade, web, ontology scheme, reality, nature.

 

Tatiana Sokolova. The Notion of a priori in Logical Empiricism and Its First Critics

The philosophy of logical empiricism has largely determined the direction and the range of problems of the philosophy, which later became known as analytic philosophy.

Philosophers of the Vienna Circle and their followers had to dissociate their program from other philosophies predominant in the early twentieth century (particularly from neo-Kantianism and neo-Hegelianism). As a part of this task the revision of the concepts of classical epistemology, including the concept of a priori was carried out. The paper examines how, in the framework of logical empiricism, apriority became identified with analyticity, and discusses alternative theories of the a priori, which resulted of this identification.

Key words: a priori, analyticity, logical empiricism, synthetic a priori, functional a priori. 

 

 

LANGUAGE AND MIND

 

Alexei Cherniak. Belief Content and Belief State

The paper is dedicated to the analysis of a contribution of the distinction between states and contents of beliefs to the explanation of changes of beliefs in some specific situations such as changed stakes or evidence. The plausible idea about beliefs is that an agent may have two different beliefs in the same proposition representing different relations to that proposition - belief states. Different accounts of states of beliefs were proposed. The claim critically observed in the paper is that a change of belief may be explained as a change of either proposition believed or state of belief. It is argued that explanations of changes of beliefs in terms of changes in their states are reducible to explanations in terms of changes in their propositional contents. In particular it is argued that cases where changing beliefs are expressed by sentences with so called essential indexical which are considered to be cases of changing belief states, but not propositions, may be described as rather instances of changing belief's propositional contents. There is also the account of belief as triadic relation between believer, Believed propositions and mode of its presentation by believers. According to it belief change may be represented as a change of the mode of presentation which preserves propositional content of the belief. Against this account it is argued that modes of presentation of propositions either does not in fact contribute to semantic contents of corresponding beliefs or may be assimilated by their propositional contents. It seems plausible that to be relevant to the belief change the information is to be at Least available to a competent reflexive agent of the belief, and this information then may be added to a propositional content of that belief after some refection.

Keywords: belief, proposition, state, semantic content, degree of belief, evidence, mode of presentation, direct reference, essential indexical.

 

Elena Zolotukhinа'Abolina “Language Games” in Philosophy: the Problem of Professional Communication

The paper discusses professional communication among philosophers. The author argues that starting from the second half of the twentieth century atomization of philosophical languages has begun. Philosopher are argued to have been creating their own speech on the basis of subjective associations, exclusively personal vision, not directly related to existing intellectual tradition; they would use their own terms and concepts without proper definitions or clarification. The author addresses the major ideological changes in the intellectual and cultural life of the twentieth century (the secularization and the rejection of metaphysical issues) as the core reasons for the radical «change» and the individualization of the philosophical language.

Metaphorization by subjective associations; camouflaging of mystical_religious terms for the secular term; the desire to speak, avoiding the subject_object distinction and metaphysical references; essayistic style of writing are claimed to be the most characteristic properties of what is dubbed as «the philosophical language game of the second half of the twentieth century». The reality produced is fruitful for various hermeneutic interpretations, but at the same time the ideas that philosophers attempt to convey to their colleagues become very hard to grasp.

Key words: philosophical language game, communucation, interpretation, subjectivization, universal validality, understanding, deconstruction. 

 


CASE-STUDIES – SCIENCE STUDIES


Valentin A. Bazhanov. Modern Neuroscience and the Nature of the Subject of Cognition: a Logico-Epistemological Study

The paper presents an attempt to reassess from the philosophical standpoint the latest social and cultural neuroscience results. These results enables to put forward the idea that traditional comprehension of subject of cognition interpretation should be reconstruct radically. We must move from its universalistic interpretation mostly manifested in transcendentalism to interpretation explicitly taking into account socio-cultural context of subject’s activity, and sometimes its biological background.

Key words: subject of cognition, transcendental schema subject, cultural neuroscience, collectivistic and individualistic cultures.

 

Ivan A. Karpenko. The Notion of Space in Some Modern Physics Theories

The article analyzes a number of modern physics approaches in different aspects, which are directly or indirectly affected by the problem of space. The variations of cosmologies based on the theory of relativity, quantum mechanics, the theory of inflation, the holographic universe model, the model of the virtual universe, etc. and their scientifically validated combinations are examined for specifics of category of space interpretation in each case. In reliance to the historical and philosophical analys is the connection between the traditional interpretations of the concept of space in philosophy and the modern ones in physics is established. The context of some modern physical theories is concluded to bring new dimensions to the understanding of space (while retaining certain classical concepts).

Keywords: concept of space, cosmology, philosophy of physics, history of science. 

 

 

INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES


Alexander Pigalev. Physics and Economics: On Conservation Principles in Scientific Research Programs

The purpose of the paper is to retrace methodological and epistemological analogies between physics and economics on the basis of the concept of scientific research program that was proposed by I. Lakatos. It is emphasized that these analogies are expressed first of all in a striking resemblance of the notion of energy

in physics to the notion of value in economics. The scrutiny of conservation principles points out their generality that not only covers physics and economics, but also presupposes the peculiar metaphysical foundations as the most persistent component of the “hard core” of scientific research programs in question. It is demonstrated that conservation principles rely on the ontology of a closed system which in its germinal form dates back to the mythological worldview and subsequently modeled nature in physics for a long time and became the basis of the concept of an equivalent exchange in economics as well. The notion of motion is regarded as interlink between the foundations of physics and economics, since both motion and economic exchange are displacement, change and permanence at the same time. The metaphysical background of the conceptualization of substance, thing and motion is examined in the context of the imperative of the identification of nonidentical entities. It is observed that the standard strategy of saving the very idea of conservation at detection of conservation principles violation is system expansion by introducing new hypothetic objects and parameters provided the system still remains a closed one. This practice structurally coincides with saving the “hard core” of the scientific research program with the help of its “protective belt”. The problems of the research strategy under study are discussed in a nutshell taking into account the theoretical consequences of the ontology of the open system.

Key words: physics, economics, scientific research program, conservation principles, etaphysics,

substance, closed system, open system, energy, value.

 

Elena Muzrukova, Roman Fando. Historical and Methodological Bases of the Development and Perception of Darwinism and Antidarwinism

The article considers different philosophical and methodological approaches in understanding the essence of the living, the approaches which reveal the dynamics of evolution. The authors analyze how different theoretical concepts (Darwinism and antidarwinism) conditioned various interpretations of the same facts in the study of cognitive models. The article shows how research of these models has led to the modern scientific ideas suggested by different scientists. These examples from the history of science clearly demonstrate the competition between numerous methodologies and heuristic hypotheses that exist in the field of different biological disciplines. The established variety is explained as a result of complexity of the organization of the life and multidimensional system of interaction of biological objects with each other and with the environment

Key words: scientific paradigm, the methodology of biological cognition, the history of science, philosophy of science, cognitive models, competition of heuristic hypotheses.

 

Vitaly Ogleznev. Intention, Action, Responsibility

The paper investigates the way in which criminal law of most countries allocates to the idea of intention, as one of the principal determinants of liability to punishment. All civilized penal systems make liability to punishment for at any rate serious crime dependent not merely on the fact that the person to be punished has done the outward act of a crime, but on his having done it in a certain state of frame of mind. These mental or intellectual elements are many and various and are collected together in the legal terminology under the description of a guilty mind. But the most prominent, of these mental elements, and in many ways the most important, is a man’s intention. The law’s concern with intention generates a number of problems, some of which are discussed in this paper. It is argued that even before one reaches these problems there is a more fundamental question to be addressed: what is a man’s intention?

This is a question which, quite apart from the law, philosophers have found both intriguing and difficult to answer. The author discusses how it can add complexity to what is considered intentional in criminal law.

Key words: intention, action, responsibility, decision, certany, uncertainty. 

 


ARCHIVE


Ilya Kasavin. Editors Remarks 

William Whewell. The Philosophy of the Inductive Sciences, Founded upon their History. Book II

 

BOOK REVIEWS


Sophia Pirozhkova. Relay of Scientific Research 

 Liana Tukhvatulina. Power under the Guise of Science