Your second paper should be
5-6 pages, typed, double-spaced with 1 inch
margins. If you would like writing credit for the course, each must be 4
pages long and you will need to provide me with drafts before the due date.
I will also read rough drafts for anyone interested, provided you give me
enough time to read it and return it to you. Electronic submission, using
attachments in Word, pdf files, and the like, are particularly welcome. I
will return a hard copy of your paper.
Papers should have arguments
at their core; you need to identify whole arguments for the views you consider
and offer arguments for your claims. Make frequent, specific references to
course readings, inserting name and page number after summarizing an argument
within the main body of your text (e.g., Kuhn2, 14). No bibliography is necessary
if you use only readings from the course.
As in any written work, clarity
is the first priority. Use an opening paragraph to anticipate the forthcoming
discussion; make links between discussion topics clear; and pull things together
in a conclusion. "I don't know" is a perfectly respectable conclusion (and
sometimes the most appropriate); but like any conclusion, it requires an argument.
|Topic 1: General philosophy of science
one general issue we have considered (the logic of discovery or of justification,
the logic of explanation, the nature of observations, Kuhn's account of normal
science, demarcation, epistemology v. sociology or psychology of science,
and so forth). After explicating an argument concerning it, consider the potential
implications for the philosophy of social science. You may use Rosenberg
and/or Wylie, but you need not.
|Topic 2: Philosophy of archaeology. Suggested topics:|
the project of The New Archaeology, and the ways in which its practitioners
attempted to undertake it, to abandon the strictures of empiricism
as understood by logical positivists and simultaneously adopt
a positivist methodology. Be sure to be clear about at least some
of what motivated the twofold project and provide an argument for one of
its strengths and for one of its limitations.
|ii) In several
essays, Wylie argues for more nuanced positions concerning realism, evidential
relationships, empiricism, and several accepted dichotomies than archaeologists
had offered. Choose one essay and issue and after explicating her arguments,
critically evaluate them in light of arguments offered in the philosophy
of science proper (considered in the first part of the quarter) or by archaeologists
advocating a particular methodological orientation for their discipline.
two issues in which the relationships between the social sciences, particularly
archaeology, and politics and/or ethics are revealed to be significant. Consider
how an aspect of contextualism that emerged in the philosophy of science
post "logical positivism" and/or in the practice of archaeologists can provide
insights into how best to deal with such relationships.
two implications of developments in archaeology and the philosophy thereof
(much of the latter undertaken within the discipline itself rather than by
philosophers of science) that call for constructive extensions of the philosophy
of science or challenge some key tenets of one or more of the "isms" that
have emerged in the philosophy of science.