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Theoria. Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia

Volume 14, Issue 2, Mayo 1999

Dimitri Ginev
Pages 291-301

On the Hermeneutic Alternative to Normative Naturalism

What I hope to do in this paper is to see whether Laudan’s normative naturalism may suggest a third alternative to normativism-naturalism dilemma in the analytical philosophy of science. In criticizing the view that all methodological rules are to be specified in the form of hypothetical imperatives, I offer the idea that a theory of scientific rationality (including its normative dimension) must go beyond the usual analytical format of “rational reconstruction”. It is precisely this idea that opens the door for a hermeneutic alternative to normative naturalism. On this alternative, one has to pay attention to the contextual normativity of doing scientific research, if one wants to give an account of the articulation of methodological rules and norms.

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