Is scientific realism an adequate way to think about science or does some form of antirealism make more sense?
This week we will again debate a controversial issue together in class. Our question is this: Is scientific realism an adequate way to think about science or does some form of antirealism make more sense? In other words, does science help us get in touch with the truth about reality or does science have some other function? We have read at least two overviews of this controversy, and now it is our turn to weigh the reasoning on each side. What are the strengths and weaknesses of the realist position? What are the strengths and weaknesses of the antirealist position? Which side seems best, all things considered?
Remember, as with last week’s discussion, we are looking for one answer as a class. Obviously we will disagree with each other, but we don’t want to have separate discussions apart from each other. Rather we will debate the alternatives together. If the first post supports one side of the debate, then the second post should either add further reasons on that side or critique the reasoning the first post gave. Then the third post should build on what the first two said. Read all the prior posts before adding your own, and do not repeat what other students have said. And remember that we are not simply looking for consensus, we are looking for the best answer. So if most students seem to agree, then you should take up the opposite side for the sake of argument. Make sure we’re being fair to both sides and presenting the best reasoning for and against each position.
Requirements: Attend discussion on at least four separate days, and post a total of 800 words. There is no required word count for individual posts as long as all your posts together total 800 words. Nor is there a minimum number of posts, but you must post on at least four separate days by Day 7.
Video Link: https://youtu.be/hQd44iXyDKM?si=Mw_Bi0EghLSOx_sX