Re: Warms, Yee, and LOPO (anti-POMO)

Ruby Rohrlich (rohrlich@GWIS2.CIRC.GWU.EDU)
Wed, 11 Oct 1995 23:27:39 -0400

Writing a bout interactions among people is far more difficult than
solving any scientific problem, no matter how difficult. So what if this
is simplistic. Inmy next incarnation I'm going to be a natural
scientist. Ruby Rohrlich

On Tue, 10 Oct 1995, SS51000 wrote:

> R.L. Warms states that science is a specific activity by specific people
> at specific times in specific places; and he is right--partly. This
> view of science-as-social-process is of course what we have gotten from
> Kuhn's *The Structure of Scientific Revolutions." Unfortunately, this
> idea was presented, and has been taken as, an alternative, rather than a
> complement, to the view of science-as-product. The products of science
> transcend the specific conditions of their creation. Nowhere is this
> clearer than in deductive-nomological explanations based on unfalsified
> law-like generalizations, as analyzed by logical positivism ("LOPO"?)in
> general, and by Hempel in particular. By this standard, as Hempel
> himself showed with his usual clarity, historical "explanations" are not
> merely different, but decidedly *inferior*--and inferior not in some
> obscure technical sense, but in their ability to explain what it is they
> claim to be explaining; so in this sense I do not share D. Yee's opinion
> that there is a species of "historical explanation" that is separate but
> equal. With all due apologies to W. Vickers, then, I suggest that the
> lopos give us deep insight into the products of science, which the pomos
> have rejected by mistaking the process of science for science itself.
> --Bob Graber