- Paperback: 459 pages
- Publisher: University Of Chicago Press; 1 edition (December 1, 2000)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0226467759
- ISBN-13: 978-0226467757
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,143,050 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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For and Against Method: Including Lakatos's Lectures on Scientific Method and the Lakatos-Feyerabend Correspondence 1st Edition
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About the Author
Paul Feyerabend (1924-1994) was educated in Europe and held numerous teaching posts throughout his career. Among his books are Against Method; Science in a Free Society; Farewell to Reason; and Killing Time: The Autobiography of Paul Feyerabend, the last published by the University of Chicago Press.
Matteo Motterlini is a lecturer in the Department of Economics at the University of Trento and visiting assistant professor in social and decision sciences at Carnegie Mellon University. He is author of Imre Lakatos: Science, Mathematics, and History.
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Top Customer Reviews
Why 'was'? Well, the correspondence that takes up most of this book is funny, personal, warm and caring. If you're looking for clarification of the thinkers, look elsewhere. Each letter will start "Dearest Imre/Paul, I just got your last article and am going to send you one of mine. Let's get together in Boston next week. By the way, I've something nasty to say about Popper/Kuhn/Searle. Take care, Imre/Paul." Not very insightful. To be sure, these letters ARE EXTREMELY ENTERTAINING and insightful into each thinker's personality. For instance, from reading this, it is easy to see that a large reason Feyarabend was a scientific 'anarchist' is because he loved to disagree with everyone and taking sides meant he had to agree with someone, thus spoil his devilish fun. In Lakatos, I see someone who wished he could be Feyerabend but could never shake that bugbear called common sense. As I said - insightful into each personality, not each philosophy.
There were, however, other parts of the book. The most educational was the opening dialogue (actually written by Matteo Matterlinski) where Feyerabend and Lakatos lay out their views and criticize the other's. Next, we have the Lakatos lectures which spend 7/8ths of the time reviewing other people's views and only then explaining his own (very badly, I may add). The two appendices were interesting. Lakatos and Feyerabend wrote on their views towards academic freedom. As one may expect, Lakatos is the more conservative here.
Still, I must give three stars as the correspondence was a treat to read. It will have you laughing, shaking your head and oddly enough, coming away with HUGE amounts of respect for both thinkers as their playful intellectual jabs at eachother and willingness to be on the recieving, as well as the giving, end, exemplify how all sciences should conduct themselves.
The Lakatos-Feyerabend correspondence is interesting. These were surely very special guys. Feyerabend, strange as it may seem, stands out as the meeker of the two; for Lakatos is pure cunning. Their exchange of opinions and invectives over Feyerabend's "Against Method" are worth reading ("Against Method" is worth reading along with this book, as a matter of fact).
Feyerabend compares the trio Popper-Lakatos-Feyerabend with Kant-Hegel-Lenin. I guess Popper himself might have thought this comparison quite fair.