This home exam covers topics from Okasha’s and Potter’s books (or equivalent books) and other relevant texts (see reference list in the schedule). Answer all the questions thoroughly in your own words (and illustrate with examples). Give references (also page numbers, or detailed web-addresses) to Okasha, Potter and all the other literature that you use. Hand in (no later than) Monday, October 10th , 12 pm. The maximum number of words that can be used are 4500, plus references. Use 1,5 spacing, Times New Roman, 12 points. Insert page numbers!
1) Explain how the “teleological” explanations work, and how they differ from, causal (or covering law) explanations. 10p
2) Explain the idea of (Popper’s) falsificationism (and the hypothetical-deductive method) and what its difficulties are. 8p
3) Describe Thomas Kuhn’s “paradigm theory”, i.e. what is a paradigm, what does it contain, and how do paradigms evolve? 10p
4) Peter Winch believes that society is “rule-goverened” (and not “law-goverened”). What does this mean for social science, and why does this (seem to) lead to relativism? In what sense is this similar to Kunh’s paradigm theory. How might relativism be countered? 10p
5) What is the fundamental difference between scientific realism and anti-realism (in Okasha). 4p
6) Explain the “no-miracle argument” for scientific realism. 4p.
7) What is an “ideal type” and what is its role of in Max Weber’s theory? 6p
8) What is the “hermeneutic circle” and how does it work in a theory of understanding? 4p
9) What is the “ideal speech situation” and what is its purpose in Habermas’ critical theory? 4p
10) What is “critical theory” (as in the Frankfurt school, or in Habermas): What is it trying to achieve and why? 6p
– Okasha, Samir. (2002) Philosophy of Science: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford UP.
– Potter Gary. (2000) The Philosophy of Social Science. Harlow: Prentice hall.