Demarcation Case

Published: 2021-09-14 01:15:07
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Category: Science

Type of paper: Essay

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My goal this thesis is the examine one of the key debates in the philosophy of
science, the realism/anti-realism debate. Here I understand realism as 'scientific' realism,
that is, the thesis that the claims of a scientific theory concerning the reality of
unobservables are true, or at least can be counted on to be true in an advanced state of
scientific advance. Different philosophers enrich this debate, and in my thesis I will draw
a special attention to the anti-realist position called 'constructive empiricism' as
developed by the pre-eminent philosopher of science, Bas van Fraassen.
Constructive empiricists, according to van Fraassen, believe in a clear
demarcation line between observable entities and unobservable entities. As such, they
express doubt about the reliability of aided observation in scientific research; for them,
the epistemic value of aided/instrument-mediated observation is questionable. But a
realist's position is different in this regard. In an advanced stage of technological

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