„It is in the nature of science that once a position becomes orthodox it should be suggested to criticism.... It does not follow that, because a position is orthodox, it is wrong.“

—  John Maynard Smith, (1976) Group Selection. Quarterly Review of Biology 51, 277-283.
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John Maynard Smith
1920 - 2004
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„When semiotics posits such concepts as 'sign', it does not act like a science; it acts like philosophy when it posits such abstractions as subject, good and evil, truth or revolution.“

—  Umberto Eco Italian semiotician, essayist, philosopher, literary critic, and novelist 1932 - 2016
Context: When semiotics posits such concepts as 'sign', it does not act like a science; it acts like philosophy when it posits such abstractions as subject, good and evil, truth or revolution. Now, a philosophy is not a science, because its assertions cannot be empirically tested … Philosophical entities exist only insofar as they have been philosophically posited. Outside their philosophical framework, the empirical data that a philosophy organizes lose every possible unity and cohesion. To walk, to make love, to sleep, to refrain from doing something, to give food to someone else, to eat roast beef on Friday — each is either a physical event or the absence of a physical event, or a relation between two or more physical events. However, each becomes an instance of good, bad, or neutral behavior within a given philosophical framework. Outside such a framework, to eat roast beef is radically different from making love, and making love is always the same sort of activity independent of the legal status of the partners. From a given philosophical point of view, both to eat roast beef on Friday and to make love to x can become instances of 'sin', whereas both to give food to someone and to make love to у can become instances of virtuous action. Good or bad are theoretical stipulations according to which, by a philosophical decision, many scattered instances of the most different facts or acts become the same thing. It is interesting to remark that also the notions of 'object', 'phenomenon', or 'natural kind', as used by the natural sciences, share the same philosophical nature. This is certainly not the case of specific semiotics or of a human science such as cultural anthropology. [O] : Introduction, 0.6

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„For Aristotelian physics the membership of an object in a given class was of critical importance, because for Aristotle the class defined the essence or essential nature of the object, and thus determined its behavior in both positive and negative respects.“

—  Kurt Lewin German-American psychologist 1890 - 1947
p. 143 Donald P. Spence (1994) The Rhetorical Voice of Psychoanalysis. p. 50 summarized this quote as "Class membership defined the essence or essential nature of the object".

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„Should it be proved that woman is naturally weaker than man, from whence does it follow that it is natural for her to labour to become still weaker than nature intended her to be?“

—  Mary Wollstonecraft British writer and philosopher 1759 - 1797
Context: Should it be proved that woman is naturally weaker than man, from whence does it follow that it is natural for her to labour to become still weaker than nature intended her to be? Arguments of this cast are an insult to common sense, and savour of passion. The divine right of husbands, like the divine right of kings, may, it is to be hoped, in this enlightened age, be contested without danger, and though conviction may not silence many boisterous disputants, yet, when any prevailing prejudice is attacked, the wise will consider, and leave the narrow-minded to rail with thoughtless vehemence at innovation. Ch. 3

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„Philosophy, as I understand the word, is a positive theoretical science, and a science in an early stage of development.“

—  Charles Sanders Peirce American philosopher, logician, mathematician, and scientist 1839 - 1914
Context: Philosophy, as I understand the word, is a positive theoretical science, and a science in an early stage of development. As such it has no more to do with belief than any other science. Indeed, I am bound to confess that it is at present in so unsettled a condition, that if the ordinary theorems of molecular physics and of archaeology are but the ghosts of beliefs, then to my mind, the doctrines of the philosophers are little better than the ghosts of ghosts. I know this is an extremely heretical opinion. Lecture II : The Universal Categories, §3. Laws: Nominalism, CP 5.61

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