Understanding Scientific Change

  • Veikko Rantala
Part of the Synthese Library book series (SYLI, volume 257)


In his article ‘Commensurability, Comparability, Communicability’, Thomas Kuhn distinguishes between translation and interpretation and indicates that some of his critics incorrectly equate the two notions.1 Translation involves an interpretive component, but it is not the same as interpretation. Interpreting a culture, language, scientific theory or paradigm may involve learning a new language or possibly an earlier version of the interpreter’s own language. According to Kuhn, however, learning a new language is not the same as translating it into the interpreter’s own language. Interpreting does not imply translating. On the other hand, incommensurability in this article means the lack of an adequate translation: there is no language into which the two languages or theories in question can be translated without residue.


Special Assumption Scientific Change Particle Mechanic Holistic Nature Counterfactual Assumption 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1996

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  • Veikko Rantala

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