Thomas Kuhn  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Thomas Samuel Kuhn (July 18, 1922 – June 17, 1996) was an American physicist, historian, and philosopher of science whose controversial 1962 book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions was influential in both academic and popular circles, introducing the term "paradigm shift", which has since become an English-language staple.

Kuhn made several notable claims concerning the progress of scientific knowledge: that scientific fields undergo periodic "paradigm shifts" rather than solely progressing in a linear and continuous way; that these paradigm shifts open up new approaches to understanding what scientists would never have considered valid before; and that the notion of scientific truth, at any given moment, cannot be established solely by objective criteria but is defined by a consensus of a scientific community. Competing paradigms are frequently incommensurable; that is, they are competing accounts of reality which cannot be coherently reconciled. Thus, our comprehension of science can never rely on full "objectivity"; we must account for subjective perspectives as well, all objective conclusions being ultimately founded upon subjective conditioning/worldview.

Thomas S. Kuhn used Bachelard's notion of "epistemological rupture" (coupure or rupture épistémologique) as re-interpreted by Alexandre Koyré to develop his theory of paradigm changes



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Thomas Kuhn" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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