This paper is an analytical review on two of the most influential books of the 20th century: The Structure of Scientific Revolution by Thomas Kuhn (1962) and Varieties of Religious Experience by William James (1902).
The first book discusses a detailed history of science, how…
person could be credited with a discovery unless history had been sufficiently studied to conclude the same, because other simultaneous, if inconclusive, theories were taking place also which helped in the structure building and assumptions base of any discovery. Therefore, a knowledge and awareness of history is of equal consequence to science aficionados.
In his book the Structure of Scientific Revolution, Kuhn broadly defines all scientific discoveries as those that have adhered with time to current facts and information and those that require further experimentation and study. Kuhn’s main contention was that while there were scientific discoveries being made simultaneously, many older theories were being discarded which were actually the basis for these newer, more accurate ones. He was opposed to the idea of sole attribution as he felt that original theory existence and proposition could not be discarded. He writes: “Out-of-date theories are not in principle unscientific because they have been discarded… research that displays the difficulties in isolating individual inventions and discoveries gives ground for profound doubts about the cumulative process through which these individual contributions to science were thought to have been compounded.” (9)
The second book is actually a compilation of the lectures that James delivered during his time as a Gifford lecturer, speaking on Natural Religion at Edinburg. The book has been read by millions of people who are interested in religion, acting “as a means of restoring self-understanding to the psychology of religion through an examination of its “foundational practices” and an appreciation of the “provisionality and uncertainty” of its knowledge” (O’Toole 233). This book is a deep study of religion and human nature, drawing insights into the significance and need of religion for human beings.
The work of William James has come to be a very important basic document and reference for ...
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