Unit 3: Science and Knowledge: Open Belief Systems (Summary)

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  • Created by: Charlotte
  • Created on: 31-01-13 16:54

Before science: people used different ways of gaining knowledge.

- Every culture = own knowledge system, usually taking the form of a religious belief system. <- knowledge possessed only accepted within those cultural boundaries.

-  Postmodernists: These bodies of knowledge are called narrative. <- One narrative traditionally dominated each culture ('metanarrative'- a single comprehensive explanation of the world).

Since Enlightenment and the development of scientific rationalism: argument that there is an objective truth that transcends all culture-specific knowledge.

- Culture-specific methods = subjective

- Scientific method = factual evidence of reality & objective. Involves: observation of the natural world -> hypothesis -> systematic testing -> evidence to try to support it (if evidence is gained, it may consequently be viewed as fact).

Science = a superior metanarrative

Rationalists argue that before science there were too many conflicting beliefs for them all to be true (view asserts that…


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