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8 December 2022 - 8 December 2022

3:00PM - 4:30PM

MHL224, Durham University Business School

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This is the image alt text Photo of Joseph D. Martin

CHESS Seminar Series 2022/23: Joseph D. Martin (Durham University) on “Ending ‘Science’ ”.

Ending ‘Science’ 


‘Science’ is no longer useful. That is not to say that we shouldn’t value the intellectual outputs of the people commonly regarded as scientists—of course we should, in the right circumstances, keeping in mind that identifying those circumstances is fraught. Rather, the category of ‘science’ itself is no longer up to the challenges of the age. Science, through the twentieth century, became a powerful category. Like many powerful categories, it has grown larger and more diffuse as a growing range of practices has sought to borrow its prestige and gain access to the resources it commands. This talk highlights the institutional processes through which a peculiar notion of science has become entrenched and expounds on the consequences of that entrenchment for the suitability of ‘science’ as a category, in light of current global challenges.
Central to this discussion is the emergence of a critical incoherence in our contemporary notion of science: the growing number of methodologically distinct epistemic activities subsumed with in it on one hand, and the enduring myth of a singular scientific method on the other. This tension, I argue, is a confounding factor in current cultural conflicts over scientific expertise, from climate change to COVID, and that understanding its historical emergence therefore clears space for exploring new and more productive ways of organising epistemic labour.

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Meeting ID: 922 4064 3150
Passcode: 284882