Natural Kinds, Conceptual Change, and the Duck-Bill Platypus: LaPorte on Incommensurability

  • Michela Massimi
Part of the The Philosophy of Science in a European Perspective book series (PSEP, volume 3)


In Chap. 5 of Natural Kinds and Conceptual Change Joseph LaPorte defends the view that the meaning-change of natural-kind terms does not open the door to Kuhnian incommensurability and is compatible with scientific progress. LaPorte’s strategy consists in disentangling meaning-change from theory-change, by contrast with proponents of the “‘incommensurability thesis’, who insist that conceptual change is marked by linguistic change”.


Mammary Gland Conceptual Change Natural Kind Causal Theory Observable Property 
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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Science and Technology StudiesUniversity College LondonLondonUK

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