History and Philosophy Of Science | PHILOSOPHY OF VISUAL REPRESENTATION
X320 | 3056 | Jordi Cat


Science is typically viewed as a mode of reasoning exemplified in
calculations and analysis of laboratory data. But the practice of
science involves also a great deal of imagination. This course
explores philosophical and historical questions raised by the use of
visual representations, metaphorical language and thought experiments:
What do scientific images represent? How do they succeed in doing so?
Is computer imaging different from diagrams? Do illustrations
represent values as well as facts? Do photographic images tell the
truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth? Do we really think
visually? Is all scientific language literal? Do metaphors play a
cognitive function or are they, rather, a distraction, embellishment
or harmful bearers of biases? in what sense are thought experiments
laboratory experiments? Does the use of such scientific fictions
compromise the objectivity of science? Does it bring science closer to
art?