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First, I show that the semantic thesis of scientific realism may be relaxed significantly—to allow that some scientific discourse is not truth-valued—without making any concessions concerning the epistemic or methodological theses which lie at realism’s core. Second, I illustrate how relaxing the semantic thesis allows realists to avoid positing abstract entities and to fend off objections to the ‘no miracles’ argument from positions such as cognitive instrumentalism. Third, I argue that the semantic thesis of scientific realism should be relaxed, because it is possible for scientific statements to be partially true, and hence approximately true, without being false.
|Number of pages||18|
|Journal||Philosophy of Science|
|Early online date||13 Jun 2022|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 2022|
Bibliographical noteI wrote this paper during my time as a Visiting Fellow at Pittsburgh’s Center for the Philosophy of Science, and my work on it was also supported by GRF Grant on ‘Scientific Progress: Foundational Issues’ from Hong Kong’s RGC. Thanks to audiences at the Center and Virginia Tech for feedback.
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- 1 Finished
Scientific Progress: Foundational Issues (科學進展：根本問題)
Research Grants Council (HKSAR)
1/08/20 → 31/07/22
Project: Grant Research