Åbent netværk for videnskabsfilosofi og videnskabshistorie

NYHEDSBREV NR 211 30. MAJ 2006

Nyt om aktiviteter indenfor Videnskabshistorie og Videnskabsfilosofi og tilgrænsende områder f.eks. Videnskab, teknologi og samfund, Forskning i forskning, Videnskabsteori, Videnskabsetik, Videnskabssociologi, Bioetik, Forskningspolitik, Naturfilosofi, Videnskabsformidling.

Redaktør: Marie Svarre Nielsen, CNV.
Annoncering af møder i Hugin og Munin, tilmelding, afmelding, og andet:



Abstraction and Reification in Biological Mathematical Modeling

June 2, 10:15 to 12:00.
Niels Bohr Institute,
Auditorium A,
Blegdamsvej 17,

Guest lecture in philosophy of science by:

Rasmus Grønfeldt Winther
Instituto de Investigaciones Filosóficas
Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México

Arranged by:
Claus Emmeche,
Center for the Philosophy of Nature and Science Studies.

Mathematical modeling is becoming increasingly important in biology. I follow Thomas Kuhn and other philosophers of science in insisting that mathematical models are suffused by diverse ontological assumptions about the way the real world is structured and works. I identify two views on the nature and function of ontological commitments - roughly, realist and constructivist views. The first holds that such assumptions are abstracted from the real world in a straightforward and innocent way. The second argues that while such presuppositions are partly abstracted in this manner, they must also meet the internal demands of the model. Through a general analysis as well as an examination of case studies from evolutionary genetics and gene regulatory networks, I defend certain aspects of constructivism, without thereby discarding realism. I believe that it is important to understand that formal manipulation is not independent of the ontological assumptions contained in different methodologies and perspectives. Sometimes dialogue about such presuppositions is the best way to achieve robust understanding across perspectives, each of which stubbornly reifies its own set of ontological assumptions.


Schizophrenia and the Comet's Tail of Nature

June 12. 14.15-16.00
Købmagergade 46,
lecture room 12, 4th floor,
1150 Copenhagen K.

Lecture by:
Maxine Sheets-Johnstone,
Department of Philosophy,
University of Oregon, USA

Center for Subjectivity Research. Organized in collaboration with Institute of Exercise and Sport Sciences, University of Copenhagen.

In the course of elaborating his concept of primal sensibility, Husserl prominences Nature. He states, for example, that "even each free act has its comet's tail of nature". When we take this and other such observations seriously and when we grasp them in conjunction with his claim that "the physical" can have "psychic effects that are relevant for subjective development," we have the possibility of opening a new vista upon schizophrenia. This new vista grounds abnormalities of the psyche in foundational understandings of Nature, understandings that complement in exacting ways the notable expositions and analyses of schizophrenia set forth by Sass, Ciompi, Parnas, Depraz,and Gallagher.

Maxine Sheets-Johnstone is an independent scholar affiliated with the Department of Philosophy at the University of Oregon. She has a strongly interdisciplinary academic background and is the author of numerous articles in humanities, science, and art journals. She has published six major books, among which The Primacy of Movement, and has recently completed her third and final "roots" book, The Roots of Morality. She has also recently compiled a book of essays titled The Corporeal Turn. Her present research project centers on xenophobia, schizophrenia, and the self.


The 17th Novembertagung on the History and Philosophy of Mathematics

November 3rd - 5th, 2006.

For more information, and to register for the conference or apply to give a paper, please go to:

The 17th Novembertagung on the History and Philosophy of Mathematics will take place from Friday 3rd to Sunday 5th November 2006 at the Science Studies Unit in the University of Edinburgh.

The "Novembertagung" is an annual international event, started in 1990, which brings together young historians and philosophers of mathematics. The conference provides an opportunity to give a presentation in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. It is open to PhD students, and others who are at an early stage in their research careers.


HUGIN og MUNIN er et elektronisk nyhedsbrev for aktiviteter indenfor videnskabsteori, videnskabsfilosofi, videnskabshistorie, videnskabssociologi og tilgrænsende emneområder. Det udsendes af Center for Naturfilosofi og Videnskabsstudier, Københavns Universitet, for at styrke kontakten mellem grupper og enkeltpersoner indenfor de nævnte fagområder.

Hugin og Munin - tanke og erindring - er de to vise ravne, der sidder på Odins skuldre og hvisker ham alle tidender i øret. Han sender dem ud ved daggry, og ved morgenmåltidet er de hos ham igen med nyheder fra hele verden.

Ravnene er her valgt som vartegn for den filosofiske eftertanke og den historiske erindring.