Home > concordia, epistemology > Bryson Brown – Pragmatic Observation and Empirical Adequacy

Bryson Brown – Pragmatic Observation and Empirical Adequacy

The 2012-2013 Concordia Philosophy Colloquium Series Presents:

Professor Bryson Brown

Philosophy Department, Lethbridge  University

Lecture:  “Pragmatic Observation and Empirical Adequacy

Abstract: Bas van Fraassen’s original account of empirical adequacy was explicitly anthropocentric.  It also suffered from a circularity problem: it provided no means by which we observers could identify our own ‘image’ as a class of structures in certain models of the theory.  But without this information, we can’t identify the empirical substructures of those models. Somewhat more subtly, even with this information we would still lack a pragmatic grasp of how to actually make observations in the theoretical language.  In his recent (2007) discussion of the ‘coordination problem’, van Fraassen provides an account of how we come to link theoretical notions (such as temperature) to practical measurement techniques.  However, as I will argue, this account undermines van Fraassen’s anthropocentrism

Friday March 22, 2013, 16:00-18:00, PR – 100, The Philosophy Department, (2100 Mackay Street)

For more information go to http://philosophy.concordia.ca/

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