Midterm Exam for my Philo Major Class

Instruction: Develop a position along the lines suggested by the statement/s in each item.  

1. ‘ Initial conditions’ are said to be playing crucial part in scientific discovery.  In Aristotelian logic, the premises would pass for these ‘conditions’ by the function for which they serve as support for the conclusion. 

2. The early medieval period tolerated scientific inquiry on limited definable areas which rational faith could find permissible as lending support for belief.  St. Augustine, centuries later, would put forth the notion of intellectus spiritualis as the crystallization of the synthesis of science and faith, with God providing the infallible direction.  Galileo, later would find this synthesis troubled by the persistence of ‘appearances’ that yearned for either a correct method or infallible solutions.

3. Subjective motives could influence scientific inquiry as Thomas Kuhn asserted.  Meanwhile, the discovery of Halley’s comet proved that this view of Kuhn, to a limited degree, is true.  Copernicus, Kepler, and Galileo in the preceding scientific periods were also somehow influenced by this un-presupposed paradigm in the light of their common mechanistic outlook, which Descartes would officially enunciate in the seventeenth century.

4. Philip Frank propounded the notion of ‘happy guessing’ that leads far beyond available scientific models.  Elsewhere, he worked out on the historical conditions that led to the split of science and philosophy.  The Greek ideal of science took up the tasks of finding conceptual solutions while the modern ideal preferred experimentation.  The split between science and philosophy, however, would find a temporary relaxation of their independence from each other in the light of Kepler’s and Newton’s notions of a hypothesis.

5. Matheson and Kline argued that ‘instrumentalism is a species of anti-realism’.  They continued to stress that ‘partial interpretation by itself encourages instrumentalism’.  Aristotle could have initiated an instrumentalist program of science in the light of the demonstrative function of the syllogism.  However, Aristotle failed to realize that the syllogism might apply as hypothesis.

6. Conventionalism states that ‘we can never rationally compare theories’.  We may go on to assert that ‘no two theories are equal’.  Copernicus’ celestial theory is not equal to the Newtonian theory, as it is obvious.  However, each complements the other, vice-versa. 


7. Aristotle heavily influenced the Greek ideal of science and to a certain degree the medieval and early modern scientific paradigms. Meanwhile, Matheson and Kline observed that ‘scientific change reflects something more political than cognitive’. 


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