Feminist criticism in biology exemplifies philosophy of science
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Lynn Hankinson Nelson’s Biology and Feminism: A Philosophical Introduction demonstrates to science students the logic of scientific reasoning and the role of philosophical assumptions in shaping biological research. The book’s strength is its demonstration of philosophical analysis. Nelson writes as a feminist philosopher of science, and each chapter analyzes the arguments that feminist biologists and feminist philosophers have used to critique particular claims and methods in biological research. In each case, Nelson explains how the reasoning behind the critique is related to fundamental topics in philosophy of science, such as the theory-ladenness of observation, the logic of disconfirmation, and the importance of sampling techniques and statistical analyses.
In the 1970s and following decades, biologists with a commitment to uncovering sexist assumptions in their research areas developed feminist critiques of biological theories: they claimed that hidden (or, sometimes,...
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