Categories
Pulp Scholarship

Daughters of the Copernican Revolution

In honor of Copernicus’s 545th birthday, I thought I would read T. Koon’s best seller, The Copernican Revolutionary. Imagine my surprise when I found folded inside the back cover the following certificate: This certifies that Miss Etta Clara Hoyt is a regularly approved member of the International Society of the Daughters of the Copernican Revolution […]

Categories
Pulp Scholarship

The Copernican Revolutionary

Thomas Kuhn, writing under a pretty lame nom de plume, tried his hand at historical pulp fiction. The story of a Revolutionary War-era woman who refused to live by society’s patriarchal norms. Ok, there’s no way Thomas Kuhn could have written such a book. But it’s fun to pretend.

Categories
Press and Pop Culture

The Use and Abuse of Kuhn’s “Paradigm Shift”

A half century ago Thomas Kuhn coined the term “paradigm shift” in his The Structure of Scientific Revolutions to describe the way that science lurches unpredictably forward. The terms “paradigm” and “paradigm shift” quickly escaped the narrow confines of history and philosophy of science and are today rarely used to describe scientific change. Instead, they […]

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Academia

Everybody has a “Paradigm”

I recently reread Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. I had first read Kuhn’s book in my first year of graduate school. Perhaps because I was reading Structure I seemed to hear the term paradigm frequently, in contexts ranging from a strange conversation in a cafe, to an attorney discussing evidence in a trial, […]