Pigliucci decries scientism, argues that science needs philosophy, and that most of us are doing it rong

Why Evolution Is True

While perusing the New Humanist website, trying to find Francis Spufford’s letter that I discussed yesterday, I came across a short piece I hadn’t seen before. It’s by Massimo Pigliucci, a philosopher (also trained in biology) working at the City University of New York, and is called “Science needs philosophy” (free at the link).  If you’ve read Massimo’s website Rationally Speaking on a regular basis, you’ll know that three of his themes are the importance of philosophy for working scientists, the fact that most scientists neglect philosophy to their detriment, and that many of us are afflicted with the dread disease called scientism, which Massimo defines as “the idea that science is the ultimate arbiter of any question, or indeed even of what counts as a meaningful question.”

These points are all emphasized in the New Humanist piece, which starts off with Pigliucci’s “j’accuse”:


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