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Epistemology & Philosophy of Science

Volume 55, Issue 4, 2018

Igor S. Dmitriev
Pages 189-205
DOI: 10.5840/eps201855476

“Tempus Spargendi Lapides”
The Fuzzy Structure of Scientific Revolutions

The article formulates some aspects concerning the nature and structure of scientific revolutions. As a reference example, the scientific (more precisely, natural-philosophical) revolution of the 16th-17th centuries (SR1) was taken, which in turn became part of the intellectual revolution of the Early Modern period. It is shown that SR1 is not at all monodirectional and not predetermined in its milestones process, when the break with the Aristotelian tradition automatically cleared the way to the new science and philosophy. In reality, there was an intellectual war, the outcome of which was by no means known to any of the opposing sides in advance. In the article eight factors are noted that contributed to the SR1: 1) weakening ideological control on the part of the Church; 2) chaotization and fragmentation of intellectual space; 3) the redundancy of the intellectual resource for the emergence of innovative theories and practices; 4) the presence of intellectual reserve (the legacy of classical Antiquity and the Hellenistic era, as well as the scholastic method); 5) the flow of new information not embedded in traditional world picture and practices; 6) weakening the requirements for the validity of the hypotheses put forward and the rigor of reasoning, declining (delution) the rationality of cognitive activity and behavior; 7) local breakthrough (as seed impulse) in one of the areas of knowledge (heliocentric theory); 8) the possibility of developments a nd tendencies of the proper natural-philosophical revolution to develop in the tideway (in a shell) of innovative concepts, methodologies and practices that have arisen in unscientific spheres (culture, politics, economics, theology, etc.).

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