Annual Lecture Series (in-person)
Lunchtime Talks (in-person)
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LTT: S. DeDeo
November 16, 2021 @ 11:10 am - 12:30 pm EST
Simon DeDeo, Carnegie Mellon/Santa Fe Institute
Consilience and Epistemic Values in the Royal Society
ABSTRACT: Consilience, the idea that scientific knowledge should draw together disparate phenomena into common frameworks, is a widely accepted value in contemporary science. Little is known, however, about how and when this value first appeared in practice. Using the full-text archives of the world’s first scientific journal, the Philosophical Transactions of London’s Royal Society, from its beginning in 1665, to 1869, we show how these new norms of explanation emerged in three distinct epochs of scientific research. A pre-modern phase, where topics are taken up in an eclectic and unsystematic fashion, is followed by an “Enlightenment” phase, beginning in the mid-18th Century, marked by the emergence of selection for consilience and the drawing together of previously-distinct fields of inquiry. This is followed by a 19th Century consolidation phase that refined and pruned the conceptual network of the Enlightenment phase and led to the proto-disciplines of the contemporary era. Our results reveal not only the role of consilience in the early history of science, but show how it came in stages, and how the process had begun decades before these values were widely articulated.
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If you prefer to watch on Zoom, please register here: https://pitt.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_nUKERYA9SoKRLMXxBu8iNA
- November 16, 2021
11:10 am - 12:30 pm EST
- Event Categories:
- Lunchtime Talks, Lunchtime Talks 2021-22
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