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Ideas of W.H. Newton-Smith, by Text

[Canadian, fl. 1980, At Balliol College, Oxford University.]

1981 The Rationality of Science
I.2 p.3 For science to be rational, we must explain scientific change rationally
I.4 p.11 Positivists hold that theoretical terms change, but observation terms don't
I.4 p.12 Critics attack positivist division between theory and observation
I.6 p.18 Defeat relativism by emphasising truth and reference, not meaning
II.2 p.27 A full understanding of 'yellow' involves some theory
II.3 p.31 We do not wish merely to predict, we also want to explain
III.3 p.52 Science cannot be shown to be rational if induction is rejected
III.4 p.55 Theories generate infinite truths and falsehoods, so they cannot be used to assess probability
III.9 p.72 All theories contain anomalies, and so are falsified!
III.9 p.73 The anomaly of Uranus didn't destroy Newton's mechanics - it led to Neptune's discovery
III.9 p.75 Anomalies are judged against rival theories, and support for the current theory
IV.3 p.90 Why should it matter whether or not a theory is scientific?
IX.2 p.211 The real problem of science is how to choose between possible explanations
VII.1 p.148 If theories are really incommensurable, we could believe them all
VII.6 p.170 De re necessity arises from the way the world is
VIII.8 p.197 More truthful theories have greater predictive power
X.2 p.241 Explaining an action is showing that it is rational
X.4 p.249 We must assess the truth of beliefs in identifying them