Re: Pasteur and nature of science

From: george murphy (
Date: Wed Jan 02 2002 - 07:28:37 EST

  • Next message: Gordon Simons: "Re: Pasteur and nature of science"

    Gordon Simons wrote:

    > In order not to be misunderstood, let me add that I do approve of telling
    > young people that radically new ideas frequently do encounter opposition
    > -- at least for a time. What eventually overcomes this opposition, when
    > the ideas are correct, are the things Ted Davis attacks: observations and
    > experiments.

            It is a misrepresentation of Ted's argument to say that he "attacks"
    observations and experiments. What he said was that "scientific knowledge is
    determined not by observations and experiments, but by the outcome of debates
    about how to interpret observations and experiments ..."
    I take that to mean (& assume Ted will correct me if I'm wrong) that
    scientific understanding of the world is not determined _simply_ by
    observations and experiments but by those observations and experiments as they
    are interpreted by scientists. This does not "attack" or ignore observations
    & experiments: There's nothing to interpret if we don't have them. It is
    simply a recognition that all data are to some extent theory laden & - to take
    the argument further - all our theories are to some extent influenced by
    various cultural factors.



    George L. Murphy
    "The Science-Theology Interface"

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