عنوان مقاله [English]
Scientific realism is the thesis that the claims of scientific theories
about the facts in the world are literally true. That the theories
sometimes even go beyond our sense data and experience in order
to give us an understanding of natural phenomena and their causes,
and that if we accept a theory as true, we are also committed to the
existence of certain undetectable things as the causes of those
Although scientific realism as an independent area in philosophy of
science is almost recent, as a general idea it can be detected
throughout the history of western thought where it meets with
oppositions mainly coming from the empiricist quarter.
Searching through the history of thought and focusing on scientific
explanation as the main goal of science, this paper shows the
philosophical roots of these two approaches as well as their gradual
development since antiquity through intricate evolvement into more
sophisticated and systematic forms which emerged almost when
philosophy of science came to be known as an autonomous field,
the period within which the dominant approach is scientific antirealism.
The writer is therefore concerned with three major
philosophers of science, Mach, Poincaré, and Duhem, emphasizing
the main features and trying to come into certain conclusions about
the two approaches at issue.