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Bird, Alexander. (2011) Thomas Kuhn. In Zalta (Ed.) (2016). Retrieved from

Title Thomas Kuhn
Resource Type collection article
Author(s) Alexander Bird
Year 2011
Collection Zalta (Ed.) (2016)


The article gives an overview of Thomas Kuhn's work, life, and intellectual influence on multiple fields. Kuhn began his career in physics, and acquired an interest in the history and philosophy of science through his undergraduate teaching in the history of science at Harvard. His work on a book about the Copernican revolution led him to develop a new view of science, which he published in his Structure of Scientific Revolutions. The initial reception of Kuhn's work by philosophers, was hostile, although they recognized its importance. His use of historical and psychological ideas was unfamiliar to them. This hostility moderated once they gained a better understanding of them, and once he clarified some of his ideas in subsequent work. The book met a more friendly initial reception among sociologists, who saw in it a way to understand science in terms familiar to their discipline.