Science as a Form of Life and Cross-disciplinarity: Mariano Artigas and Charles S. Peirce

Jaime Nubiola



According to Charles S. Peirce and to Mariano Artigas, science is the collective and cooperative activity of all those whose lives are animated by the desire to discover the truth. The particular sciences are branches of a common tree. The unity of science is not achieved by the reduction of the special sciences to more basic ones: the new name for the unity of the sciences is cross-disciplinarity. This is not a union of the sciences themselves, but rather the unity and dialogue of scientists, the real inquirers into the truth. In the light of Peirce’s and Artigas’s teachings, we can see that philosophers are in just the right place to call for this unity of sciences. This call should not be seen as promoting a return to the old scientism, but seeks a deep dialogue between the particular sciences and philosophy in order to deal with the presuppositions of the scientific enterprise. The key to the cross-disciplinarity of knowledge is not revolution, but rather shared efforts in a unique mixture of continuity and fallibilism, of affection and reason, of the attempt to understand others’ disciplines as well as our own.


philosophy; unity of science; classification of the sciences; cross-disciplinarity; dialogue

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