Unless otherwise noted, page references will be to the text of The Inference That Makes Science (originally McMullin 1992) which is reprinted in this issue of Zygon: Journal of Religion and Science.
McMullin's Inference: A Case for Realism? with Bas C. van Fraassen, “Scientific Realism and the Empiricist Challenge: An Introduction to Ernan McMullin's Aquinas Lecture”; and Ernan McMullin, “The Inference that Makes Science”
SCIENTIFIC REALISM AND THE EMPIRICIST CHALLENGE: AN INTRODUCTION TO ERNAN MCMULLIN'S AQUINAS LECTURE
Article first published online: 24 FEB 2013
© 2013 by the Joint Publication Board of Zygon
Volume 48, Issue 1, pages 131–142, March 2013
How to Cite
van Fraassen, B. C. (2013), SCIENTIFIC REALISM AND THE EMPIRICIST CHALLENGE: AN INTRODUCTION TO ERNAN MCMULLIN'S AQUINAS LECTURE. Zygon, 48: 131–142. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.2012.01322.x
- Issue published online: 24 FEB 2013
- Article first published online: 24 FEB 2013
- Ernan McMullin;
- scientific realism
Abstract In The Inference That Makes Science, Ernan McMullin recounts the clear historical progress he saw toward a vision of the sciences as conclusions reached rationally on the basis of empirical evidence. Distinctive of this vision was his view of science as driven by a specific form of inference, retroduction. To understand this properly, we need to disentangle the description of retroductive inference from the claims made on its behalf. To end I will suggest that the real rival to McMullin's vision of science is not the methodologies he criticizes so successfully but a more radical empiricist alternative in epistemology.