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The One Culture?A Conversation about Science$
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Jay A. Labinger and Harry Collins

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780226467221

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226467245.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 24 September 2021

Real Essences and Human Experience

Real Essences and Human Experience

(p.216) Chapter 20 Real Essences and Human Experience
The One Culture?

N. David Mermin

University of Chicago Press

No reliable body of knowledge can be undermined by viewing its acquisition as a collective human activity. Indeed the chapter goeso beyond Harry Collins and maintains that scientists can benefit from “estranging themselves from their own practices” in this way. What else was Einstein's recognition of the conventional character of simultaneity? Or Steven Weinberg's warning against “ill-placed loyalty” to “the great heroic ideas of the past”? Many of the interpretive confusions plaguing the foundations of quantum mechanics might reflect insufficient estrangement from unsound linguistic practices.

Keywords:   human experience, body of knowledge, human activity, Harry Collins, quantum mechanics, linguistic practices

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