By Hans Primas
Booklet by means of Primas, Hans
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Additional info for Chemistry, Quantum Mechanics and Reductionism: Perspectives in Theoretical Chemistry
A scientific theory is never an independent body of knowledge but always relative to its historical and cultural context. The basic preconception necessary for any scientific theory is called the paradigm. The adopted paradigm reflects the "Zeitgeist", that is the general intellectual and moral state of the culture. A paradigm establishes the possibility of a standard of objectivity and truth. 2. The Strueture of Theories 44 An empirically well-confirmed theory is unfalsifiable in the context of its paradigm, it can only be overthrown by a new paradigm.
Aha-reactions owe little to logic or reason, they are overwhelming, they have a high degree of inevitability and aesthetic appeal. In his delightful book "A Mathematical Apology", the mathematician Godefrey Harold Hardy stresses the importance of the aesthetic side of theories: "The. tteJtn1>, Uke. the. inteJt'~ Oft poet' ~, mMt be. auti6 ul; the. ideM, Uke. the. theJt in a haJrmoiUoM way. Beauty ~ the. 6fut tut: theJte. in the. wolLtd 60f[. 85). This criterion applies to scientific theories as well.
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Chemistry, Quantum Mechanics and Reductionism: Perspectives in Theoretical Chemistry by Hans Primas