Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Autonomy: Autonomy refers to the ability of individuals, organizations, or entities to self-govern, make independent decisions, and act based on their own principles or rules without external control or influence. See also Individuals, Organizations, Institutions, Nations, Politics.
Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

Paul Feyerabend on Autonomy - Dictionary of Arguments

I 43
Principle of Autonomy/Feyerabend: collecting the facts for examination purposes is the only thing left for the scientist to do. If facts exist and are available, regardless of whether alternatives to the theory under consideration are looked at. Principle of the relative autonomy of facts. (versus theories).
, >Facts.
The principle does not mean that the discovery and description of facts is entirely theory-independent, but that the facts belonging to the empirical content of a theory are available, regardless of whether alternatives to this theory are taken into account.
>Discoveries, >Empirical content.
((s) I.e. that facts are autonomous, independent of theories.)
I 44
FeyerabendVsAutonomy Principle: this principle is far too simple a point of view. Facts and theories are much more closely linked than the principle of autonomy wants to admit.
E.g. it is known today that the Brownian particles are a perpetuum mobile of the second kind, and that its existence refutes the second law of thermodynamics. (Henning GenzVs: that is not true.)
Could this relationship between movement and theory have been shown or directly discovered? Two questions:
1) Could the relevance of the movement have been discovered in this way?
2) Could it have been shown to disprove the 2nd law of thermodynamics? ((s) Nonsense: to »observe« relevance).
Each thermometer is subject to fluctuations which are the same as the Brownian movement. The actual refutation came about in a completely different way: with the help of the kinetic theory and its use by Einstein in his calculation of the statistical properties of the Brownian movement. In this refutation the consistency condition was violated: the phenomenological theory was incorporated into the larger framework of statistical physics.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Feyerabend I
Paul Feyerabend
Against Method. Outline of an Anarchistic Theory of Knowledge, London/New York 1971
German Edition:
Wider den Methodenzwang Frankfurt 1997

Feyerabend II
P. Feyerabend
Science in a Free Society, London/New York 1982
German Edition:
Erkenntnis für freie Menschen Frankfurt 1979

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