The Thomas Kuhn Quiz

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9 Questions

What is the term coined by Kuhn through his book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions?

Periodic Paradigm Shifts

According to Kuhn, how does science progress?

Through periodic revolutions

What is the George Sarton Medal?

A medal given by the History of Science Society

What is the main argument of Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions?

Science undergoes periodic paradigm shifts

What is the definition of 'incommensurable' according to Kuhn?

Two competing paradigms cannot be compared through objective criteria

Where did Kuhn obtain his BSc degree in physics?

Harvard College

What is Kuhn's view on scientific truth?

Scientific truth is defined by a consensus of a scientific community

What is the significance of Kuhn's work in social science?

It is extensively used in the post-positivist/positivist debate within International Relations

When did Kuhn join Princeton University as the M. Taylor Pyne Professor of Philosophy and History of Science?

1964

Study Notes

Thomas Kuhn: American Philosopher of Science

  • Kuhn introduced the term "paradigm shift" through his book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.
  • He claimed that scientific fields undergo periodic paradigm shifts instead of linear and continuous progress.
  • Kuhn argued that scientific truth cannot be established solely by objective criteria but is defined by a consensus of a scientific community.
  • According to him, competing paradigms are incommensurable, and scientific comprehension can never rely wholly upon objectivity.
  • Kuhn was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, and attended private progressive schools before graduating from The Taft School in Watertown, Connecticut, in 1940.
  • He obtained his BSc degree in physics from Harvard College in 1943 and his MSc and PhD degrees in physics in 1946 and 1949, respectively.
  • Kuhn taught at Harvard from 1948 until 1956 and joined Princeton University as the M. Taylor Pyne Professor of Philosophy and History of Science in 1964.
  • The Structure of Scientific Revolutions was originally printed as an article in the International Encyclopedia of Unified Science in 1962.
  • Kuhn argued that science does not progress via a linear accumulation of new knowledge but undergoes periodic revolutions.
  • His work has been extensively used in social science, such as in the post-positivist/positivist debate within International Relations.
  • Kuhn was named a Guggenheim Fellow in 1954 and was awarded the George Sarton Medal by the History of Science Society in 1982.
  • He died in 1996 after being diagnosed with lung cancer.

Test your knowledge on the life and work of Thomas Kuhn, the American philosopher of science who introduced the term "paradigm shift" and revolutionized the way we view scientific progress. From his early education to his groundbreaking book, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, this quiz will challenge you with interesting facts and concepts related to Kuhn's ideas and contributions to the field of philosophy and history of science. Are you ready to dive into the world of paradigm shifts and scientific revolutions? Take the quiz

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