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The Aesthetic Dimension of Science

  • The Journal of Aesthetics and Science of Art
  • Abbr : JASA
  • 2019, 56(), pp.3-34
  • DOI : 10.17527/JASA.56.0.01
  • Publisher : 한국미학예술학회
  • Research Area : Arts and Kinesiology > Other Arts and Kinesiology
  • Received : December 15, 2018
  • Accepted : January 14, 2019
  • Published : February 28, 2019

Jun-Sik Won 1

1대전대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The aim of this paper is to identify the aesthetic moments in science and elucidate what a meaning they can have in scientific practices. Here the relation between aesthetics and science is examined in two respects, one being beauty of nature as a purpose of scientific inquires and the other being beauty of scientific theory itself. The former is based on the belief that such aesthetic moments constitute the principles of nature, and the latter presupposes the belief that a beautiful theory is closer to truth. These believes, of course, do not guarantee the truthfulness of the theory. Nevertheless, many great scientific achievements have been made in part based on these believes. According to Thomas S. Kuhn, a scientific theory is not an objective truth, but merely a way of explaining the nature, which is chosen by the scientific community. In most cases the most important criterion for the assessment and selection of a theory is the criterion of empirical adequacy but the aesthetic moments often play an important role in the selection processes. Indeed many scientific theories have been selected in part by the aesthetic criterions, and there may still be a possibility for the better explanations of nature by such criterions.

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