Internal reorganization of the theory - Theory and practice of argumentation

The internal restructuring of the theory

An important but so far almost unexplored way of substantiating a theoretical statement is the internal restructuring of the theory , within which it is put forward. This restructuring, or reformulation, involves the introduction of new patterns, norms, rules, assessments, principles, etc. that change the internal structure of both the theory itself and the theoretical world it postulates.

The new scientific, theoretical position is formed not in a vacuum, but in a certain theoretical context. The context of the theory determines the concrete form of the proposition being put forward and the fundamental vicissitudes of its subsequent justification. If the scientific assumption is taken in isolation from the theoretical environment in which it appears and exists, it remains unclear how it eventually succeeds in becoming an element of reliable knowledge.

The promotion of assumptions is dictated by the dynamics of the development of the theory to which they relate, the desire to encompass and explain new facts, to eliminate internal inconsistency and inconsistency, etc. In many respects the support received by the new position from the theory is connected with the internal restructuring of this theory. It can consist in the introduction of nominal definitions (definitions-requirements) instead of real (definitions-descriptions), in the adoption of additional agreements on the objects under study, clarifying the fundamental principles of the theory, changing the hierarchy of these principles, etc.

Theory gives a certain force to the provisions entering into it. This support largely depends on the position of the statement in theory, in the hierarchy of its constituent statements. The restructuring of the theory, ensuring the movement of some statement from its "periphery" to its kernel & quot ;, informs this statement of great system support. Let us explain this aspect of the matter with a few simple examples.

It is well known that a liquid is a state of matter in which pressure is transmitted uniformly in all directions. Sometimes this feature of the fluid is placed in the basis of its very definition. If such a state of a substance suddenly appeared that would resemble liquid in everything, but would not have the property of a uniform transfer of pressure, we could not consider this substance as a liquid.

However, not always the liquid was defined as follows. For quite some time, the statement that the liquid transmits pressure in all directions evenly, was only an assumption. It was tested for many liquids, but its applicability to all other, yet unexplored fluids, remained problematic. With the deepening of the conception of the fluid, this statement has turned into an empirical truth, and then into the definition of a liquid as a special state of matter and has thus become a tautology.

This transition from the assumption to tautology was realized due to two interrelated factors. On the one hand, new experimental material was attracted, which applied to different liquids and confirmed the assertion in question, and on the other hand, the theory of fluid itself was deepened and reconstructed, which finally included this statement in its core.

The chemical law of multiple relationships was originally a simple empirical hypothesis, which also had a random and dubious confirmation. The work of the English chemist V. Dalton led to a radical restructuring of chemistry. The provision on multiple relations has become an integral part of the definition of the chemical composition, and it has become impossible to verify or disprove it experimentally. Atoms can be combined only in relation to one to one or in some other simple, integer proportion - now this is the constructive principle of modern chemical theory.

A similar kind of internal restructuring of the theory can be illustrated by a simplified example. Let's say that we need to establish what unites the following cities: Vaduz, Valencia, Valletta, Vancouver, Vienna,

Vientiane. At once it is possible to put forward the assumption that these are cities that are capitals. Indeed, Vientiane is the capital of Laos, Vienna - Austria, Valletta - Malta, Vaduz - Liechtenstein. But Valencia is not the capital of Spain, and Vancouver is not the capital of Canada. However, Valencia - the main city of the same name of the Spanish province, Vancouver - the same Canadian province. To preserve the original hypothesis, the definition of the concept of capital should be clarified accordingly. We will understand by capital the main city of the state or its territorial part - the province, the region, etc. In this case, Valencia is the capital of the province of Valencia, and Vancouver is the capital of the province of Vancouver. Thanks to the restructuring of the "world of capitals" we have achieved that our original assumption became true.

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