Wallace’s Galileo and His Sources: Suppositional vs. Hypothetical Reasoning
Science, Method, and Argument in Galileo
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This is a critical examination of William Wallace’s Galileo and His Sources: The Heritage of the Collegio Romano in Galileo’s Science (1984). I argue that Wallace’s book is a noteworthy contribution to the history of philosophy, the history of science, Medieval and Renaissance studies, and Galilean scholarship. In particular, Wallace establishes a significant connection between Galileo and the Jesuit Collegio Romano, thus suggesting an approach to the critical interpretation of the Galileo affair that is more judicious than the usual accounts. Moreover, Wallace emphasizes what he calls suppositional reasoning in both Galileo’s epistemological writings and his scientific work, thus strengthening the emerging appreciation of Galileo as a logician-in-action. However, questions remain about whether all science-vs-religion conflict can be really eliminated from the Galileo affair, and about whether Wallace’s concept of suppositional reasoning is really powerful enough to do away with other crucial forms such as demonstrative, hypothetical, and probable reasoning.
Galilei, Galileo, 1564-1642; Reviews
History of Philosophy | History of Science, Technology, and Medicine | Philosophy
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Finocchiaro, M. A.
Wallace’s Galileo and His Sources: Suppositional vs. Hypothetical Reasoning.
Science, Method, and Argument in Galileo, 40
Cham, Switzerland: Springer, Cham.