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For and Against Method : Including Lakatos's Lectures on Scientific Method and the Lakatos-Feyerabend Correspondence - Imre Lakatos

For and Against Method

Including Lakatos's Lectures on Scientific Method and the Lakatos-Feyerabend Correspondence

Paperback Published: 1st January 1999
ISBN: 9780226467757
Number Of Pages: 459

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The work that helped to determine Paul Feyerabend's fame and notoriety, "Against Method, " stemmed from Imre Lakatos's challenge: "In 1970 Imre cornered me at a party. 'Paul, ' he said, 'you have such strange ideas. Why don't you write them down? I shall write a reply, we publish the whole thing and I promise you--we shall have a lot of fun.' " Although Lakatos died before he could write his reply, "For and Against Method" reconstructs his original counter-arguments from lectures and correspondence previously unpublished in English, allowing us to enjoy the "fun" two of this century's most eminent philosophers had, matching their wits and ideas on the subject of the scientific method.
"For and Against Method" opens with an imaginary dialogue between Lakatos and Feyerabend, which Matteo Motterlini has constructed, based on their published works, to synthesize their positions and arguments. Part one presents the transcripts of the last lectures on method that Lakatos delivered. Part two, Feyerabend's response, consists of a previously published essay on anarchism, which began the attack on Lakatos's position that Feyerabend later continued in "Against Method." The third and longest section consists of the correspondence Lakatos and Feyerabend exchanged on method and many other issues and ideas, as well as the events of their daily lives, between 1968 and Lakatos's death in 1974.
The delight Lakatos and Feyerabend took in philosophical debate, and the relish with which they sparred, come to life again in "For and Against Method, " making it essential and lively reading for anyone interested in these two fascinating and controversial thinkers and their immense contributions to philosophy of science.
"The writings in this volume are of considerable intellectual importance, and will be of great interest to anyone concerned with the development of the philosophical views of Lakatos and Feyerabend, or indeed with the development of philosophy of science in general during this crucial period."--Donald Gillies, "British Journal for the Philosophy of Science" (on the Italian edition)
"A stimulating exchange of letters between two philosophical entertainers."--Tariq Ali, "The Independent"
Imre Lakatos (1922-1974) was professor of logic at the London School of Economics. He was the author of "Proofs and Refutations" and the two-volume "Philosophical Papers." Paul Feyerabend (1924-1994) was educated in Europe and held numerous teaching posts throughout his career. Among his books are "Against Method"; "Science in a Free Society"; "Farewell to Reason"; and "Killing Time: The Autobiography of Paul Feyerabend," the last published by the University of Chicago Press.

Science with a human face


Intended to present the contrasting ideas of two modern thinkers in philosophy of science this contains many disparate elements in presenting the ideas of Imre Lakatos and his sparing partner Paul Feyerabend. The lecture series by Lakatos are well presented, easy to follow and extends the work of Kuhn's "Structure" into social sciences. While proposing a stronger theoretical and empirical base to the social sciences he also argues for a greater humanity in judging and application of all sciences. The following short items and correspondence, while likely to be a mine of information for future biographers and historians, lacks a coherent framework to assess the competing ideas of structured but humane progress of Lakatos (For Method) against the anarchistic and no doubt well meaning humanism of Feyerabend (Against Method).

Melbourne, Australia.


For and Against Method

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Introduction: A Dialogue
Lectures on Scientific Method, Imre Lakatos Lecture
The Demarcation Problem Lecture
The Theological Nature of Scientific Standards Lecture
Inductivism and Its Historical Myths Lecture
Comparing Demarcation Criteria: Verificationism and Conventionalism Lecture
The Limits of Conventionalism Lecture
Popper and the Rules of the Game of Science Lecture
Falsification and Intellectual Honesty Lecture
The Methodology of Scientific Research Programmes Editor's Note: The Value of Novelty
Theses on Anarchism, Paul Feyerabend
The Lakatos-Feyerabend Correspondence (1968-1974)
On Rearing Scholars
Letters to the Director of the Department of Philosophy
The Intellectuals' Betrayal of Reason
Letter to His Editors
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780226467757
ISBN-10: 0226467759
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 459
Published: 1st January 1999
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.88  x 3.18
Weight (kg): 0.64