U3APP – Science and Philosophy – Friend or Foe?


Dear students,

It was good to meet you all on Tuesday 7 February. Next week at 3.15 pm on Tuesday 14 February we will arrange the seating around the table rather than in rows to allow for better interaction.

We will begin the class by tying up loose ends from the first session and dealing with any questions you have.

I have issued 3 documents (click on the links to see the documents)

(a) a list of general references; General-Resourcesfor-Science-and-Philosophy.pdf

(b) notes on class 1; 2017_class-1-notes.pdf

(c) preparatory material for class 2. 2017_-class-2-preparatory.pdf

Of course, you are not expected to read/view everything. The main thing is to think about the questions, and if the resources are  a help, then use them.

Happy thinking!


PS: For those who missed Class 1 below is suggested pre-reading/viewing and the notes from the slide presentation.

Class 1 – Tuesday 7 February 2017

In our first class we will discuss what is meant by “science” and “philosophy.” To help stimulate your thinking, I am suggesting some readings and video clips. As usual in our classes, don’t expect unanimity on these questions!

What is Science?

  1. Brian Cox; Richard Feynman: www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBqemHR49-c
  2. Rupert Sheldrake: www.youtube.com/watch?v=JKHUaNAxsTg
  3. On objectivity in science: the-objectivity-thing-or-why-science-is-a-team-sport/
  4. Science as child’s play: aeon.co/essays/how-the-scientific-method-came-from-watching-children-play
  5. For some scientific issues see The Economist, Science Briefs: www.economist.com/sciencebriefs

What is Philosophy?

  1. From Philosophy Now (assorted definitions): What_Is_Philosophy_and_How_Do_We_Do_It
  2. Massimo Pigliucci on www.youtube.com/watch?v=OfYw9OqD8YA
  3. Nigel Warburton, The Open University: www.open.ac.uk/Arts/philosophy/whatis.shtml
  4. For a more inclusive definition of philosophy: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophy
  5. On philosophy of science: what-is-philosophy-of-science-and-should-scientists-care/

Notes on Class 1 (7 Feb 2017) Introductory