Thomas Kuhn vs. Nancy Cartwright

Kuhn has makes some interesting claims about how the history of science and its progress be viewed that go against the traditional cumulative view of knowledge in which knowledge is simply added to our pool of understanding and the view that different theories can be compared rationally. Kuhn's claims are largely against what Carnap believes to be true about how science progresses. Carnap holds the traditional view that knowledge is cumulative and there is a rational method in which theory selection can occur. Although Kuhn's claims are unconventional, he manages to give them strength by good examples and logical thinking.
Kuhn's main claim is that there is no methodology in choosing any particular paradigm. Kuhn views science as being in one of two phases: "normal science" or "scientific revolution". While most of the time is spent in "normal science" where knowledge is cumulative, his main claim applies during "scientific revolution". During "normal science" scientists, to provide explanations for current phenomenon, use a paradigm to guide their research. The paradigm governs the way the scientists think about their research; thus affecting their methods, interpretations, and other theories used as a reference for their research. As long as the paradigm continues to help scientists explain phenomena, it is kept. Once an event occurs that is unexplainable by the paradigm scientists choose to either ignore it, do more research to try and explain it with the current paradigm, or develop a new paradigm that can explain the anomaly. If the anomaly is significant, it will continue to appear if it i!
s ignored so eventually it must be dealt with. If the paradigm continues to fail to explain the phenomenon then the only option left is to develop a new paradigm that can explain the anomaly. This new paradigm must take in a different set of theories, values, or methods to be…


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