Scientific Realism and the Plasticity of Mind

Scientific Realism and the Plasticity of Mind

4.09 (44 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 
4.09 (44 ratings by Goodreads)
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A study in the philosophy of science, proposing a strong form of the doctrine of scientific realism' and developing its implications for issues in the philosophy of mind.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 168 pages
  • 138 x 216 x 17mm | 192g
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Reprint
  • Worked examples or Exercises
  • 0521338271
  • 9780521338271
  • 1,243,490

Back cover copy

The present essay is addressed simultaneously to two distinct audiences. The first audience consists of my professional colleagues, other academics, students, and lay readers, who are less than intimately familiar with the philosophical position commonly called scientific realism. For them I have here attempted to make available in fairly short compass a coherent and comprehensive account of that position as it bears on the philosophy of perception, on the theory of meaning, on the philosophy of mind, and on systematic epistemology.
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Table of contents

Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. The plasticity of perception; 3. The plasticity of understanding; 4. Our self-conception and the mind/body problem; 5. Sentential epistemologies and the natural science of epistemic engines; Bibliography; Index.
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Review quote

'This is a very ambitious book. Beginning with the premise of scientific realism (explained clearly in the first six pages), Churchland aims at little less than a 'transvaluation of all values'. If some of Churchland's more glowing descriptions sound rather like The Tao of Science, that is probably all to the good; the consequences drawn are important, vivid, and much better calculated to give life to the philosophical issues than aridly abstract discussions ... I recommend the reading of this book to scientific realists and to diehard empiricists alike.' Bas C. Van Fraassen, The Canadian Journal of Philosophy 'I heartily recommend [Churchland's] book to all who are interested in the philosophy of mind.' J. J. C. Smart, The Australasian Journal of Philosophy 'Once in a great while a book appears that makes us want to stand up and cheer. Churchland has written just such a book ... The most delightful and intriguing sections of the book are those in which Churchland shows how we might expand our perceptual and introspective consciousness, and come to see the physical world and ourselves through the categories provided by science.' Stephen P. Stitch, Ethics
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Rating details

44 ratings
4.09 out of 5 stars
5 30% (13)
4 57% (25)
3 9% (4)
2 2% (1)
1 2% (1)
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