It is possible that no book written in the last 50 years has had an influence as profound and far-reaching as Thomas Kuhn''s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Kuhn''s argument that scientific knowledge does not develop cumulatively, but rather proceeds by a series of "paradigm shifts," captivated not only philosophers of science, but scholars in a wide range of academic disciplines. The Road Since Structure is a follow-up to his landmark work and a look at Kuhn''s theory since the book''s original publication in 1962.
In keeping with Kuhn''s wishes (he died in 1996), editors James Conant and John Haugeland organized The Road Since Structure to include 11 philosophical essays written since 1970. In the first part of the book, Kuhn spells out his theory as it developed in the 1980s and 1990s; in the second part, he replies to a number of criticisms and misreadings. The third section is a fascinating interview with Kuhn conducted less than a year before he died. For general interest readers, the lengthy interview--in which Kuhn candidly and engagingly discusses the trials and tribulations of his life and philosophical career--will probably be the most interesting part of the book. For those attuned to Kuhn''s controversial work, The Road Since Structure is an indispensable aid for understanding his theory as it developed and for appreciating the full force of his replies to a host of critical objections. As always, Kuhn''s clarity and fluid prose render accessible a field fraught with opaque writing. --Eric de Place
Thomas Kuhn will undoubtedly be remembered primarily for The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, a book that introduced one of the most influential conceptions of scientific progress to emerge during the twentieth century. The Road Since Structure, assembled with Kuhn''s input before his death in 1996, follows the development of his thought through the later years of his life: collected here are several essays extending and rethinking the perspectives of Structure as well as an extensive, fascinating autobiographical interview in which Kuhn discusses the course of his life and philosophy.
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