A good book may have the power to change the way we see the world, but a great book actually becomes part of our daily consciousness, pervading our thinking to the point that we take it for granted, and we forget how provocative and challenging its ideas once were - and still are. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is that kind of book. When it was first published in 1962, it was a landmark event in the history and philosophy of science. Fifty years later, it still has many lessons to teach.
With The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Kuhn challenged long-standing linear notions of scientific progress, arguing that transformative ideas don't arise from the day-to-day, gradual process of experimentation and data accumulation but that the revolutions in science, those breakthrough moments that disrupt accepted thinking and offer unanticipated ideas, occur outside of "normal science", as he called it. Though Kuhn was writing when physics ruled the sciences, his ideas on how scientific revolutions bring order to the anomalies that amass over time in research experiments are still instructive in our biotech age.
Note: This new edition of Kuhn's essential work in the history of science includes an insightful introduction by Ian Hacking, which clarifies terms popularized by Kuhn, including paradigm and incommensurability, and applies Kuhn's ideas to the science of today.
©1996 The University of Chicago; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.
"A landmark in intellectual history which has attracted attention far beyond its own immediate field." (Science)
"Perhaps the best explanation of [the] process of discovery." (New York Times Book Review)
I really felt this was overly long and should have been edited down by about half. It was hard to stay engaged, and I was questioning whether it was the quality of the reader, or the writing. This is unfortunate, as this is an influential book, and I think Kuhn's claims are very compelling.
Nowadays we throw around the word
This isn't a book of
Dennis Holland's narration of Kuhn's precise, sometimes technical writing is lively and easily digested. I disagree with other reviews which claim this book is unsuitable for audio. Under a less capable narrator, yes, it could have been a monotonous listen, but Dennis Holland keeps the content moving.
The book is certainly engrossing, and I did find myself wrapped up in Kuhn's prose and arguments. On the other hand, it's a dense, meaty book, and others may want to pause periodically to think about and mentally digest some of the important points.
I'm very grateful this book found its way to Audible. Anyone serious about the study of history, philosophy, the history of science, or indeed almost any other discipline in the humanities owes it to themselves to read this book.
This was an important book in 1963 when it was first published. I thought it sounded interesting. Unfortunately, I found it to be a very scholarly work, which overworked it's thesis again and again in fine detail. The author seems to insert a paranthetical comment or subclause into every sentence. I could have gotten everything I needed to know on this subject in a ten-page article.
I suppose that I should have read reviews beforehand to understand better whether the work would hold my interest.
At least the narrator makes it easy to follow the author's dense terminology and phrasing.
I have been able to listen to a lot of audiobooks, even some that others have commented on as being hard to listen to and found them quite pleasing. This narrator takes the cake as being the worst. This book, I will have to read myself. Its listed as being nine hours but I am willing to bet I could read it in 5 hrs. This guy sentences come out choppy due to the pauses he makes.I had the hardest time staying interested. I literally had it playing at a faster speed due to how slow he was speaking, I finally gave up. I will avoid anything narrated by Dennis Holland in the future.
landmark book that introduced durable new phases to scientific thought
at 210 pages it is a heavy dose of philosophy however
to "think about thinking" that long is beyond most folks
as with most scientific writing it struggles to be readable
it helps to remember it was not written to be read by the general reader
it was written to survive the focused scrutiny of his academic rivals
scientific revolutions are necessarily intensely painful events
comfortable useful frameworks are forcefully traded in for better ones
the cards are reshuffled and not everyone likes their new spot in the deck
the book is memorable as much for the text as for the discussions it started
the pace of scientific/intellectual revolutions will only quicken
they will be easier to understand with the map provided by kuhn
The title of the review is a taste of the writing style.
Having read my share of audible books I can tell this particular book needs a thorough revision for narration.
The writing style of the book is at the least awkward, making it hard to listen to. Although the narrator has a pleasant voice and pase, he seems to be thrown out of his rhythm every other line. I guess most sentences are too long and too complex to make heads or tails of it or to be able to determine what part needs emphasis.
Also the introduction is full of disclaimers and bylines not of interest to the reader, making me think 'get on with it'. Otherwise a potential interesting book.
(my own disclaimer: I have read this books first few chapters, not the entire book (yet)).
This book covers the topic indicated by it's title very thoroughly. The result is simultaneously fascinating and boring. The arguments are well articulated and compelling, but the text lacks literary flavor. The content is so dense that it was, at times, difficult to stay attuned to what I was reading.
Yes. This book provides an insight into the scientific process and how scientific ideas evolve over time. It's a nice reminder to the public and to those in scientific fields that 'fact' can be dictated by politics and social pressures of the day. Nothing is fixed and science is a dynamic field that makes mistakes, evolves, and changes.
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