100 books like The Road Since Structure

By Thomas S. Kuhn, James Conant (editor), John Haugeland (editor)

Here are 100 books that The Road Since Structure fans have personally recommended if you like The Road Since Structure. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Scientific Revolution

K. Brad Wray Author Of Kuhn's Intellectual Path: Charting The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

From my list on science studies.

Why am I passionate about this?

In Denmark, I teach at the Center for Videnskabsstudier. “Videnskabsstudier” is often translated as Science Studies. It thus connotes a rather broad field, which includes philosophical, historical, and sociological studies of science. And the notion of “videnskab”, which is frequently translated as science is interpreted rather broadly, to include, in addition to the natural science, the social sciences, and the humanities, indeed, basically any field one might study at a university. In fact, my own research intersects with and is influenced by research in all these fields.

K.'s book list on science studies

K. Brad Wray Why did K. love this book?

Shapin makes the audacious claim that there never really was a scientific revolution in Early Modern Europe, despite the fact that “the scientific revolution” has been a central organizing idea in the history of science and the history of Western culture more generally.

His provocative book provides a useful and engaging assessment of the utility of the concept of “the scientific revolution” for making sense of developments in the history of science.  He challenges us to think about the place of radical changes in the history of science, and whether the claims scientists make about such changes are merely rhetorical constructions.

Despite Shapin’s arguments, I am inclined to think something very significant happened in the sciences in the 16th and 17th Centuries, something that deserves to be called “revolutionary”. But Shapin’s book will certainly make readers reflect on what they mean by scientific revolution.

By Steven Shapin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Scientific Revolution as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"There was no such thing as the Scientific Revolution, and this is a book about it." With this provocative and apparently paradoxical claim, Steven Shapin begins his bold vibrant exploration of early modern science. In this classic of science history, Shapin takes into account the culture - the variety of beliefs, practices, and influences - that in the 1600s shaped the origins of the modern scientific worldview.


Book cover of Scientific Realism: How Science Tracks Truth

K. Brad Wray Author Of Kuhn's Intellectual Path: Charting The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

From my list on science studies.

Why am I passionate about this?

In Denmark, I teach at the Center for Videnskabsstudier. “Videnskabsstudier” is often translated as Science Studies. It thus connotes a rather broad field, which includes philosophical, historical, and sociological studies of science. And the notion of “videnskab”, which is frequently translated as science is interpreted rather broadly, to include, in addition to the natural science, the social sciences, and the humanities, indeed, basically any field one might study at a university. In fact, my own research intersects with and is influenced by research in all these fields.

K.'s book list on science studies

K. Brad Wray Why did K. love this book?

Psillos defends a view called scientific realism.

Scientific realists generally assume that the growth of scientific knowledge is continuous and cumulative, with no significant setbacks. Discoveries in science generally add on to our current understanding of the world. Scientific realists generally regard scientific revolutions or paradigm changes as a threat to the rationality of science as such changes seem to imply that scientists have had a fundamentally flawed understanding of the world.

Psillos presents one of the most comprehensive and strongest cases for realism. Anyone who is serious about defending a view of the development of science that involves periodic revolutionary changes of theory, as I do, has to take Psillos’ arguments very seriously.

By Stathis Psillos,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Scientific Realism as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Scientific realism is the optimistic view that modern science is on the right track: that the world really is the way our best scientific theories describe it . In his book, Stathis Psillos gives us a detailed and comprehensive study which restores the intuitive plausibility of scientific realism. We see that throughout the twentieth century, scientific realism has been challenged by philosophical positions from all angles: from reductive empiricism, to instrumentalism and to modern sceptical empiricism.
Scientific Realism explains that the history of science does not undermine the arguments for scientific realism, but instead makes it reasonable to accept scientific…


Book cover of Scientific Elite: Nobel Laureates in the United States

K. Brad Wray Author Of Kuhn's Intellectual Path: Charting The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

From my list on science studies.

Why am I passionate about this?

In Denmark, I teach at the Center for Videnskabsstudier. “Videnskabsstudier” is often translated as Science Studies. It thus connotes a rather broad field, which includes philosophical, historical, and sociological studies of science. And the notion of “videnskab”, which is frequently translated as science is interpreted rather broadly, to include, in addition to the natural science, the social sciences, and the humanities, indeed, basically any field one might study at a university. In fact, my own research intersects with and is influenced by research in all these fields.

K.'s book list on science studies

K. Brad Wray Why did K. love this book?

Zuckerman provides a comprehensive study of the American scientists who won Nobel prizes between 1907 and 1972.

The book provides a window into the personalities of the people doing Nobel prize-winning research, as well as the sort of environments in which they were socialized and educated. Nobel laureates have tended to study and work with other Laureates or future Laureates. She also discusses the impact that winning a Nobel prize has on scientists, and the effects of the prize are not wholly positive.

The book also demonstrates the potential power of sociological analyses. Zuckerman creatively combines interview data with quantitative analyses. I think Zuckerman’s books are a fantastic example of how to conduct empirical research in sociology and the social sciences more generally.

By Harriet Zuckerman (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Scientific Elite as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Scientific Elite is about Nobel prize winners and the well-defined stratification system in twentieth-century science. It tracks the careers of all American laureates who won prizes from 1907 until 1972, examining the complex interplay of merit and privilege at each stage of their scientific lives and the creation of the ultra-elite in science.

The study draws on biographical and bibliographical data on laureates who did their prize-winning research in the United States, and on detailed interviews with forty-one of the fifty-six laureates living in the United States at the time the study was done. Zuckerman finds laureates being successively advantaged…


Book cover of The Book Nobody Read

K. Brad Wray Author Of Kuhn's Intellectual Path: Charting The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

From my list on science studies.

Why am I passionate about this?

In Denmark, I teach at the Center for Videnskabsstudier. “Videnskabsstudier” is often translated as Science Studies. It thus connotes a rather broad field, which includes philosophical, historical, and sociological studies of science. And the notion of “videnskab”, which is frequently translated as science is interpreted rather broadly, to include, in addition to the natural science, the social sciences, and the humanities, indeed, basically any field one might study at a university. In fact, my own research intersects with and is influenced by research in all these fields.

K.'s book list on science studies

K. Brad Wray Why did K. love this book?

Gingerich discusses both the reception of Copernicus’ heliocentric theory, as well as his own extensive research on Copernicus’ book, De Revolutionibus.

Over the course of several decades, Gingerich studied hundreds of copies of the first and second editions of Copernicus’ famous book in an effort to constructive a comprehensive census of the existing copies. These books can now sell for millions of dollars.

Gingerich was motivated in part by earlier studies of the annotations in various copies of the first edition of De Revolutionibus. Some of these contain many detailed annotations, indicating that the book was often studied with great care, contrary to a popular view that the book was seldom read. Further, he was able to reconstruct social networks by noting which copies contained the exact same annotations as other copies.

Gingerich makes the reader feel the excitement of archival research, as his book reads like a…

By Owen Gingerich,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Book Nobody Read as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

1543 saw the publication of one of the most significant scientific works ever written: De revolutionibus (On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres), in which Nicolaus Copernicus presented a radically different structure of the cosmos by placing the sun, and not the earth, at the centre of the universe. But did anyone take notice? Harvard astrophysicist Owen Gingerich was intrigued by the bold claim made by Arthur Koestler in his bestselling The Sleepwalkers that sixteenth-century Europe paid little attention to the groundbreaking, but dense, masterpiece. Gingerich embarked on a thirty-year odyssey to examine every extant copy to prove Koestler wrong-Logging…


Book cover of The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

Angela Potochnik Author Of Idealization and the Aims of Science

From my list on exploring strange features of science.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been a philosopher before I knew what philosophers were: asking questions to challenge the starting points for conversations. My biggest pet peeve has always been people who were sure they entirely understood something. While scientists conduct science to help learn about the world, philosophers of science like me study science to try to figure out how it works, why (and when) it’s successful, and how it relates to human concerns and society. Humans ultimately invent science, and I think it’s fascinating to consider how its features relate to our interests and foibles and how it’s so successful at producing knowledge and practical abilities. 

Angela's book list on exploring strange features of science

Angela Potochnik Why did Angela love this book?

In 1962, Thomas Kuhn upended the idea of scientific progress by suggesting that scientific theories change basically like fads. I find this book riveting, with a mix of colorful descriptions of science’s history and bold claims.

The book has been so influential that “paradigm shift”—its central idea that basic features of how we see the world change when scientific theories change—has been adopted to refer to any time our ideas change radically. 

By Thomas S. Kuhn,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked The Structure of Scientific Revolutions as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A good book may have the power to change the way we see the world, but a great book actually becomes part of our daily consciousness, pervading our thinking to the point that we take it for granted, and we forget how provocative and challenging its ideas once were-and still are. "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions" is that kind of book. When it was first published in 1962, it was a landmark event in the history and philosophy of science. And fifty years later, it still has many lessons to teach. With "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions", Kuhn challenged long-standing…


Book cover of Changing Order: Replication and Induction in Scientific Practice

Deirdre N. McCloskey Author Of The Rhetoric of Economics

From my list on the rhetoric of science (from a distinguished professor).

Why am I passionate about this?

Deirdre Nansen McCloskey is Distinguished Professor Emerita of Economics and of History, and Professor Emerita of English and of Communication, adjunct in classics and philosophy, at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Trained at Harvard in the 1960s as an economist, she has written twenty-four books and some four hundred academic and popular articles on economic history, rhetoric, philosophy, statistical theory, economic theory, feminism, queer studies, liberalism, ethics, and law.

Deirdre's book list on the rhetoric of science (from a distinguished professor)

Deirdre N. McCloskey Why did Deirdre love this book?

Collins is a brilliant and lucid exponent of the (mainly British) “strong programme” in the sociology of science. He is one of the numerous “children of Kuhn,” in the sense that like Kuhn he understands scientists to be (usually) honest and serious human beings, not machines implementing an alleged Scientific Method.

By Harry Collins,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Changing Order as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This fascinating study in the sociology of science explores the way scientists conduct, and draw conclusions from, their experiments. The book is organized around three case studies: replication of the TEA-laser, detecting gravitational rotation, and some experiments in the paranormal. "In his superb book, Collins shows why the quest for certainty is disappointed. He shows that standards of replication are, of course, social, and that there is consequently no outside standard, no Archimedean point beyond society from which we can lever the intellects of our fellows."--Donald M. McCloskey, Journal of Economic Psychology


Book cover of We Have Never Been Modern

Jason Ānanda Josephson Storm Author Of The Myth of Disenchantment: Magic, Modernity, and the Birth of the Human Sciences

From my list on to shatter the myth of modernity.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an award-winning historian and philosopher of the human sciences. But I got here by means of an unusually varied path: working for a private investigator, practicing in a Buddhist monastery, being shot at, hiking a volcano off the coast of Africa, being jumped by a gang in Amsterdam, snowboarding in the Pyrenees, piloting a boat down the canals of Bourgogne, playing bass guitar in a punk band, and once I almost died from scarlet fever. Throughout my journey, I have lived and studied in five countries, acquired ten languages, and attended renowned universities (Oxford, Harvard, and Stanford), all while seeking ways to make the world a better place.

Jason's book list on to shatter the myth of modernity

Jason Ānanda Josephson Storm Why did Jason love this book?

The late French philosopher Bruno Latour was infamous for his iconoclastic work in the history and sociology of science and technology.

If you read only one of his books, I’d say go for We Have Never Been Modern because it cuts to the heart of things by disrupting the conventional understanding of modernity as a clear separation between nature and culture. Latour argues that even as “moderns” have been rhetorically invested in this particular bifurcation of the world, nature-culture hybrids are continually proliferating.

So if you’ve ever asked yourself, why are cities not considered natural landscapes? Or why are animals always presumed to be without culture? Or what does it even mean to be modern? Then this is the book for you.

By Bruno Latour, Catherine Porter (translator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked We Have Never Been Modern as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With the rise of science, we moderns believe, the world changed irrevocably, separating us forever from our primitive, premodern ancestors. But if we were to let go of this fond conviction, Bruno Latour asks, what would the world look like? His book, an anthropology of science, shows us how much of modernity is actually a matter of faith.

What does it mean to be modern? What difference does the scientific method make? The difference, Latour explains, is in our careful distinctions between nature and society, between human and thing, distinctions that our benighted ancestors, in their world of alchemy, astrology,…


Book cover of Fashionable Nonsense: Postmodern Intellectuals' Abuse of Science

Efe Yazgan Author Of Neutron Stars, Supernovae & Supernova Remnants

From my list on non-technical books to get interested in knowing the Universe.

Why am I passionate about this?

My fascination with the Universe led me to become a high-energy physics and astrophysics researcher. I work at CERN (Geneva) working on elementary particles. Over many years, I have written and reviewed numerous scientific articles and served as the editor for two books. I have also reviewed books and co-written a few short popular science pieces. My reading interests encompass not only academic and literary works but also popular science, philosophy, and sociology. Understanding the Universe is difficult. With this collection, I hope to provide you with an authentic introduction to the study of the Universe and its evolution from various perspectives. 

Efe's book list on non-technical books to get interested in knowing the Universe

Efe Yazgan Why did Efe love this book?

This book explains what not to do to know the Universe, with examples from non-fiction postmodern nonsense "texts." These texts include discourses detached from experimental verification and scientific terms used completely out of context.

I love this book because I find pseudo- and postmodern science distasteful and harmful. I think it shows clearly how some famous postmodern intellectuals promote antipathy for facts, clear thinking, empirical tests, and, in general, science — our best shot at understanding the Universe. These postmodern intellectuals have huge influence and have helped spread the trend of rejection of reason and science throughout the World.

I adore this book stressing science is not an arbitrary "narration" or a collection of metaphors for postmodern essays. I share the authors’ dreams about a future after postmodernism. 

By Alan Sokal, Jean Bricmont,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Fashionable Nonsense as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In 1996 physicist Alan Sokal published an essay in Social Text--an influential academic journal of cultural studies--touting the deep similarities between quantum gravitational theory and postmodern philosophy.

Soon thereafter, the essay was revealed as a brilliant parody, a catalog of nonsense written in the cutting-edge but impenetrable lingo of postmodern theorists. The event sparked a furious debate in academic circles and made the headlines of newspapers in the U.S. and abroad.

In Fashionable Nonsense: Postmodern Intellectuals' Abuse of Science, Sokal and his fellow physicist Jean Bricmont expand from where the hoax left off. In a delightfully witty and clear voice,…


Book cover of The Presence of the Past: Morphic Resonance and the Memory of Nature

Peter Mark Adams Author Of The Power of the Healing Field: Energy Medicine, Psi Abilities, and Ancestral Healing

From my list on energy healing, consciousness, and wellbeing.

Why am I passionate about this?

Peter Mark Adams and his wife, Kenzie, have shared a healing and personal development practice for more than 20 years specializing in energy and meridian therapies, breathwork, and meditation. Peter and Kenzie have practiced and taught a range of meditative and energy-based techniques, including Mind Connection Healing (MCH), Usui Reiki, Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), Mindfulness, Vivation, Integrative and Rebirthing Breathwork. Peter’s non-fiction is published by Inner Traditions and Scarlet Imprint; literary prose and poetry by Corbel Stone Press and Paralibrum. His essays on energy healing have appeared in the peer-reviewed Paranthropology Journal and the Journal of Exceptional Experiences and Psychology as well as on his academia.edu page.

Peter's book list on energy healing, consciousness, and wellbeing

Peter Mark Adams Why did Peter love this book?

The amazing results achieved with energy healing raise profound questions concerning the nature of consciousness and the human energy anatomy and how these suggest the existence of a much broader conception of reality than consensual thought allows for, and it is with respect to this broader conception that Rupert Sheldrake proves such an informative guide. His central concept - that of the existence of ‘morphic fields’ connecting all sentient life-forms and the influence that they exert on our emotional and physical lives through the phenomena of ‘morphic resonance’ - provides the ‘missing link’ in our understanding of consciousness and as well as the root causes of much of the mental, emotional and physical ill-health that we encounter as healers. 

By Rupert Sheldrake,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Presence of the Past as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Explains how self-organizing systems, from crystals to human societies, share collective memories that influence their form and behavior

• Includes new evidence and research in support of the theory of morphic resonance

• Explores the major role that morphic resonance plays not just in animal instincts and cultural inheritance but also in the larger process of evolution

• Shows that nature is not ruled by fixed laws but by habits and collective memories

In this fully revised and updated edition of The Presence of the Past, Cambridge biologist Rupert Sheldrake lays out new evidence and research in support of his…


Book cover of The Systems View of Life: A Unifying Vision

Bettina von Stamm Author Of The Other Side of Growth: An Innovator's Responsibilities in an Emerging World

From my list on today’s complex world and help our planet.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an innovation expert for over 30 years, I've been cautioning about the "dark side" of innovation and emphasized the importance of sustainability. Though in light of the urgency of our planet's situation, we need to shift our focus from sustainability to regeneration. The unprecedented complexity and connectedness of today’s world demand thinking in systems, and the kind of innovation that leads to the transformation of our current social and economic systems so we can live in harmony with nature. This requires us to question who we collaborate with, what we value, and how we create value. We need to work together differently, with different leadership, and to change our own ways of thinking.

Bettina's book list on today’s complex world and help our planet

Bettina von Stamm Why did Bettina love this book?

For too long we have considered everything in the world through the lens of linear relationships.

Slowly – too slowly in my view – are we realizing the systemic nature of most things.

What Fritjof and Luigi do in their book is enable the reader to truly internalize the systemic nature of the world that we are part of. The ‘being part of’ aspect is critical.

Too many of us humans seem to consider ourselves to be the pinnacle of evolution, tobe in control, to have the right to plunder our planet at our heart’s content.

It is high time everyone realizes that we are but part of a system, entirely dependent on it and its healthiness. While it might be a little heavy-going at times, the book takes the reader on a journey at the end of which any chance to still see the world through a linear lens…

By Fritjof Capra, Pier Luigi Luisi,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Systems View of Life as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Over the past thirty years, a new systemic conception of life has emerged at the forefront of science. New emphasis has been given to complexity, networks, and patterns of organisation, leading to a novel kind of 'systemic' thinking. This volume integrates the ideas, models, and theories underlying the systems view of life into a single coherent framework. Taking a broad sweep through history and across scientific disciplines, the authors examine the appearance of key concepts such as autopoiesis, dissipative structures, social networks, and a systemic understanding of evolution. The implications of the systems view of life for health care, management,…


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