By J. F. Scott
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Additional resources for A History of Mathematics: From Antiquity to the Beginning of the Nineteenth Century
Ullica Segerstråle Contextualizing the "Science Wars" This book has three aims. " We will bring light to bear on this question from a variety of perspectives: sociological, historical, philosophical, and scientific. The second aim is to open up a larger discussion about the relationship between the field of science studies and its object, science itself. What is the possible and desirable relationship between scientific practitioners and those who study their activity within science studies, or STS?
Which I arranged at the meeting; see also Bauer, chapter 2, this volume). Interestingly, a more common complaint was that "strong" constructivists, when challenged, typically regressed toward the uninteresting and toothless assertion that science is influenced by social factors, that is, a "weak" constructivist stance. It seemed hard to find real, strong constructivists to argue with. Richard Dawkins (the author of The Selfish Gene) appeared to have got lucky, however, since he had, indeed, been able to present a constructivist social scientist with the following question: Suppose there is a tribe which believes that the moon is an old calabash tossed just above the treetops.
But what were the real implications of Sokal's hoax? For some it suggested that editors of cultural magazines were not capable of distinguishing serious from nonserious reasoning as long as the form was right and the article reached expected political conclusions. For others, it indicated that the editors may have been pleased by an apparently postmodern contribution coming from a scientist. Still for others, it suggested that Sokal's political qualifications as a leftist (he represented himself as having worked in Nicaragua during the Sandinista regime) had misled the editors about his true convictions (that he was not a cultural leftist).
A History of Mathematics: From Antiquity to the Beginning of the Nineteenth Century by J. F. Scott