On the fundamental importance of the social psychology of research as a basic paradigm for the philosophy of science: A philosophical case study of the psychology of the Apollo moon scientists




A combined philosophical and social psychological study of over 40 of the Apollo moon Scientists reveals that the Orthodox or Received View of Scientific Theories is found wanting in several respects: (1) observations are not theory-free; (2) scientific observations are not directly observable; and (3) observations are no less problematic than theories. The study also raises some severe criticisms of distinction between the context of discovery and the context of justification. Not only does this distinction fail to describe the actual practice of science but even more important it has the dangerous effect of excluding some of the strongest lines of evidence which could most effectively challenge the distinction. The distinction is harmful of efforts to found interdisciplinary theories and philosophies of science.



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