Monday, August 06, 2012

A passage about science from Peter Medawar

After browsing through, I started looking through some of Peter Medawar's articles. From his review 'Lucky Jim' of "The Doble Helix" (1968)
"A good many people will read The Double Helix for the insight they hope it will bring them into the nature of the creative process in science. It may indeed become a standard case history of the so-called “hypothetico-deductive” method at work. Hypothesis and inference, feedback and modified hypothesis, the rapid alternation of imaginative and critical episodes of thought—here it can all be seen in motion, and every scientist will recognize the same intellectual structure in the research he does himself. It is characteristic of science at every level, and indeed of most exploratory or investigative processes in everyday life. No layman who reads this book with any kind of understanding will ever again think of the scientist as a man who cranks a machine of discovery. No beginner in science will henceforward believe that discovery is bound to come his way if only he practices a certain Method, goes through a certain well-defined performance of hand and mind."

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