Evolution and the Naked Truth : Darwinian Approach to Philosophy book cover
1st Edition

Evolution and the Naked Truth
Darwinian Approach to Philosophy

ISBN 9781138624481
Published June 29, 2020 by Routledge
258 Pages

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Book Description

Published in 1998, the main aim of this book is to use a naturalistic, evolutionary approach to solve some of the most important problems in philosophy. The first two problems come from the philosophy of science: the problem of rationality of science and the problem of truth in science. In presenting the first problem, the author argues that the views of Kuhn and Feyerabend do create a very serious challenge to traditional epistemology, however, if the assumption of individual rationality is abandoned in favour of the author's social concept of rationality, a committed naturalism can account for science as a rational activity. In tackling the second problem of truth, the author shows that a committed evolutionary philosophy does not support realism but leads instead to a thorough evolutionary relativism of scientific knowledge. It is nevertheless possible to use this evolutionary relativism to construct a theory of relative truth. The issue of whether science discovers truth has also been tied to absolutism, that a well formulated theory of relative truth is likely to bring about a profound transformation of the way we think about the field. The author explores the notion of relative truth in the philosophy of science, ethics and aesthetics.

Table of Contents

Part 1: Evolutionary Relativism  1. Evolution and the Naked Truth  2. Extraterrestrial and Human Science  3. Bohr and Evolutionary Relativism  4. Cultural Relativism and Universalism  5. A Note of Margolis  Part 2: Evolution and Rationality  6. The Connection Between Evolution and the Nature of Scientific Knowledge  7. Towards a Future Epistemology of Science  8. Hull, Biology and Epistemology  9. Science as Part of Nature  Part 3: From Epistemology to Ethics  10. Evolution and Justification  11. The Morality of Rational Ants  12. A Naturalistic Account of Free Will  Part 4: Application to Space Science  13. A Philosopher Looks at Space Exploration  14. Pecking Orders and Rhetoric in Science  15. SETI, Self-Reproducing Machines and Impossibility Proofs.

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