Critical realism, a new approach to science

Proceedings of ‏The 4th International Academic Conference on Humanities and Social Sciences

Year: 2020


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Critical realism, a new approach to science

Mahdi Jamali



Critical realism is a contemporary and new approach in philosophy of science and philosophy of social sciences which was founded by Roy Bhaskar. This approach was formed in the philosophy of science in contract to the empirical realism of the positivists and Kant’s transcendental idealism, according to which there is an objective reality outside the mind contrary to Kant’s view, and this reality is not limited to observable and experiential level contrary to the positivists’ view. In the philosophy of social sciences, this approach was created in contract to empirical realism and interpretiveness, according to which social realities, although different from natural realities due to the purposefulness of human being, but it can be considered principles and methods of critical realism in those two due to the existence of causal mechanisms in both. In this research, which is conducted in a library method and presented in a descriptive-analytical method, we intend to explain the principles of critical realism thinking in the philosophy of science and social sciences and show its place among rival schools.

Keywords: Critical Realism, Bhaskar, Philosophy of Science, Philosophy of Social Sciences.