Popper and his philosophy: An overview

Geoffrey Stokes*, Jeremy Shearmur

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)


    Karl Popper both provoked and attracted controversy. His work addressed key problems in the fields of epistemology, philosophy of science and social science, logic, political theory and politics, metaphysics and theories of mind. In each field he challenged dominant theories and sought to formulate new ones. Perhaps his most important achievement was to cast doubt upon induction as a criterion of demarcation between science and non-science, and to propose the alternative offalsifiability. Over the course of his life he extended this criterion into a broader philosophy of critical rationalism that would be applicable to many fields. At the heart of this philosophy is the practice of criticism. Popper rejected the idea that we should try to justify our arguments and proposed that we should replace it with the idea that our ideas need to be exposed to, and to survive, criticism. In tandem with attempts to refute opposing views, Popper encouraged scientists to propose bold conjectures and then attempt to refute them.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationThe Cambridge Companion to Popper
    PublisherCambridge University Press
    Number of pages29
    ISBN (Electronic)9781139046503
    ISBN (Print)9780521856454
    Publication statusPublished - 24 Jun 2016


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