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Rouse Examines Naturalism in Articulating the World

Olivia DrakeNovember 13, 20152min

rousebook(by Fred Wills ’19)
Joseph Rouse, the Hedding Professor of Moral Science, is the author of a new book titled Articulating the World: Conceptual Understanding and the Scientific Image, published by University of Chicago Press in December 2015.

Rouse also is professor of philosophy, professor and chair of the Science in Society Program, professor of environmental studies.

In his new book, Rouse examines naturalism as a historically situated philosophical project, “as we find ourselves in the midst of ongoing conflicts over what naturalism’s commitments are and why they matter, along with challenges to those commitments,” he explained.

According to Rouse, “the most pressing challenge for naturalism today is to show how to account for our own capacities for scientific understanding as a natural phenomenon that could be understood scientifically.” This idea marks the driving theme behind his book—that meeting this challenge “involves substantial revisions to two familiar philosophical accounts; conceptual capacities within a scientific understanding and what a scientific conception of the world sums up to.”