نوع مقاله : مقاله پژوهشی
عنوان مقاله [English]
Althought in the long priod of domination of philosophical thought there were some intellectuals who suggested application of empirical method in the study of natural phenoma, but this method found systematic and general application only in th 16th century and proved to be extremely effective in producting new and dependable knowledge about natural entities. In the 18th century, August Compte took long stepts in direction of applying this method in the studies of Human and social phenomena, and his work was seriously persued by the intellectuals of Wienna Circle in their endeavor at presenting experimental methodology wilhin the framework of positivism. Positivism was later developed by Carnap and Witgenestein in two different directions of exprementalism and logicalism, logical positivism flourished from the third decade of 20th century, despit the fact that positivism in either from lacked a logical foundation, because by this method only some parts of a whole is actually studid but the final statement is about the whole itself- the entity which is not actually studied. This point was shown brilliantly by David hume but the paradox was that experimental method, despite lack of logical foundation, was amazingly effective.
karl Reymod Popper, in his efforts to solve this paradox, introduced falsification, instead of verification from this point of view a reasercher must try to disprove a hypothesis, in case of failure he must be accepted temporarily the hypothisis as true,. This means, in effect, metaphysical statements, which are essencially beyond falsification, must be accepted as true and scientific temporarily. Popper was thus the first intellectual in imposing a philosophical view on scientific method in 20th century and he praved the way of passing from science to metaphysics as well.
In the early 1960s Thomas Kuhn in his well-known book, (Structure of Scientific Revolution) refuted exprimentalism in its both versions of verification and refutation, claiming that progress of science has nothng to do with application of experimental method and gradual accumulation of knowledge:progress of science is achived through scientific revolutions which substitute a new paradigm for the old one. A paradigm is, in essence, a collection of metaphysical beliefs accepted by the scientific community in a given period of time. This notion was further expanded by paul Fyrabend by claiming that any noticeable progress in science hase been achived not by following a given scientific method but by breaking methodological tabus. He goes much beyond rejecting experimentalism, he reject logicalism as well, by Bidding Farewell to reason, and prescribing anarchism in knowledge as a whole.
Too withstand this onslaught, positivism restricted itself as behaviorism applicable in the study of social phenomena. As a result a “ scientific war” was initated between behaviorism and methodological anarchism in 1980s which led to critical relalivism in one hand and critical realism in the other. Critical realism, is the dominant methodology of research at present. so one can claim that philosophical and metaphysical efforts to discredit scientifical method was not successful.