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What is Truth?. What is truth? Once upon a time...

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Presentation on theme: "What is Truth?. What is truth? Once upon a time..."— Presentation transcript:

1 What is Truth?

2 What is truth? Once upon a time...

3 What is truth?

4 Once upon a time … (Before enlightenment) Religion Tradition Enlightenment, humanism Problem: How can we know – how can we establish knowledge created by man?

5 What is truth? First attempt: Rationalism

6 What is truth? First attempt : Rationalism Background: Religious wars Montaigne (1533-1592): What is truth? Scepticism and doubt

7 What is truth? René Descartes: How can we have secure knowledge? Svar: Cogito ergo sum Metoden: ” never to accept anything as true unless I recognized it to be evidently such: that is, carefully to avoid precipitation and prejudgment, and to include nothing in my conclusions unless it presented itself so clearly and distinctly to my mind that there was no occasion to doubt it. ”

8 What is truth? Rationalism - ratio - thinking, reason Result: The rationalist science Theories and models Valid knowledge that are able to calculate and predict the future Truth as Coherence – The internal logic of the model Newton’s physics as a model for all other sciences

9 What is truth? Content Axioms – self evident Logic – if - then Theorems – logical conclusion Models of the world: Ex. Newton’s physics

10 What is truth? Empirical findings can show that things fall, not how! Galileo: Investigating the free fall Newton: A logical model that are able to calculate and predict the free fall

11 What is truth? Coherence The inner logic of the model The model is true – not the world, (as our senses might deceive us)

12 What is truth? Result – The rationalist science Secure knowledge that are able to calculate and predict the future Newton’s physics as model for all other sciences

13 What is truth? Problems Coherence – the model and the world No model is better than its axioms - ex. Economic man Problems for some sciences ex. medicine

14 What is truth? Second attempt: Positivism

15 What is truth? Ponere: Put on display, erect ”An attempt to create secure and unambiguous methods of science” “Measure the world!”

16 What is truth? Background Enlightenment – a showdown with religion, romanticism, idealism and rationalism New natural sciences and trustworthy theories of development (biology) Enlightenments dream of a better society

17 What is truth? Empirism Knowledge about the word is created by our senses alone Locke, Hume, Berkeley Berkeley’s phenomenalism Scepticism

18 What is truth? Positivist science Some attempts to make a positivist science: Comte, Mach, J.S. Mill. Comte: Religious, metaphysical, positive scientist The hierarchy of subjects: psychology, sociology, economy, biology, chemistry, physic, mathematics

19 What is truth? Logical positivism Goal: To establish secure knowledge that is able to counter dictatorships, Nazism and fascism Positivism: The experienced – our senses A logic for the truth of the argument The verification principle

20 What is truth? The verification principle 1. Analytical sentences (cookies tastes good) 2. Synthetic sentences a. Basic sentences (It is raining) b. logical functions of basic sentences The truth is found by going back to the basic sentences and decide if they are true or false

21 What is truth? Positivism as method 1. Researchers research facts 2. Data: measures, figures, digits, numbers 3. Data are inter-subjective, controllable 4. Reliability – “We measure the right way” Parallel tests Repetitive tests 5. Validity – “we measure the right thing”

22 What is truth? 6. Test report 7. (The relationship between) Data - theory - Induction - Deduction - Explanation - Prediction 8. Logic - mathematics 9. Truth as Correspondence

23 What is truth? The critique of positivism - strong and weak points Strong points: Positivism as critique Subverts myths and dogma Critique of rationalism

24 What is truth? The weak sides 1. ”The journalism problem” 2. Inner problems (verification principle) 3. “Hur mäter man vackert?” 4. Positivism as non-critical science, Positivism as normal science

25 What is truth? Result – “SCIENCE” Rationalism and positivism as scientism - flawless methods - Scientism – as a secular religion

26 What is truth? The critique of scientism Power:Knowledge is power and power defines knowledge Truth:The legitimacy and the legitimisation Knowledge and interest Praxis:? (What is the value of science)


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