The History of Sexual Anatomy and Self-Referential Philosophy of Science
"The History of Sexual Anatomy and Self-Referential Philosophy of Science," Metaphilosophy 34, #3 (April, 2003), pp. 229-49. Preprinted as "A szexus, az anatómia története és a reflexív tudományfilozófia" in Forrai Gábor and Margitay Tihamér, eds., Tudomány és Történet, Budapest: Typotex, 2002, pp.
20 Pages Posted: 18 Sep 2013
Date Written: June 1, 1998
This essay is a case study of the conceptual self-destruction that occurs in the work of a social-constructionist historian of science who embraces a radical philosophy of science. It focuses on Thomas Laqueur's treatise Making Sex: Body and Gender from the Greeks to Freud (Harvard University Press, 1990) in arguing that a history of science committed to the social construction of science and to the central theses of Kuhnian, Duhemian, and Quinean philosophy of science is incoherent. Laqueur's text is examined in detail to make the main point; a similar phenomenon in the work of the historian of science Evelyn Fox Keller is then discussed.
Keywords: Evelyn Keller, Feminist Epistemology, History and Philosophy of Biology, Duhem, Sexual Anatomy, Social Constructionism, Thomas Kuhn, Thomas Laqueur, W.V.O. Quine
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation