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June 2017
200 pages  
2 b&w Illustrations
6 x 9
9780822964568
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The Foundations of Scientific Inference
50th Anniversary Edition
Salmon, Wesley
After its publication in 1967, The Foundations of Scientific Inference taught a generation of students and researchers about the problem of induction, the interpretation of probability, and confirmation theory. Fifty years later, Wesley C. Salmon’s book remains one of the clearest introductions to these fundamental problems in the philosophy of science. This anniversary edition of Salmon’s foundational work features a detailed introduction by Christopher Hitchcock, which examines the book’s origins, influences, and major themes, its impact and enduring effects, the disputes it raised, and its place in current studies, revisiting Salmon’s ideas for a new audience of philosophers, historians, scientists, and students.

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Wesley C. Salmon (1925–2001) was University Professor of Philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh, past president of the Philosophy of Science Association, and the author of numerous books, including Four Decades of Scientific Explanation; Space, Time, and Motion: A Philosophical Introduction; and Scientific Explanation and the Causal Structure of the World.
Praise for the first edition:
“Salmon’s book is written in a clear and elementary style. It has many of the earmarks of a text useful for beginners and advanced students alike.”—British Journal for the Philosophy of Science

Praise for the first edition:
“As a presentation of the primary issues concerning the foundations of scientific inference, this volume can be recommended most highly.”—Philosophy and Phenomenological Research

Praise for the first edition:
“This is an excellent little book. One might disagree with some of its contentions; some will disagree with the whole foundational approach. But Professor Salmon has given us a book of exceptional clarity and conciseness.”—Isis

“Praise for the first edition:
This study admirably fills the need for an elementary survey of problems in the area of probability and induction. A well-written and challenging introduction to the field.”—Review of Metaphysics

“Praise for the first edition:
Few current writers have devoted as much worthwhile attention to the problems of induction as Wesley Salmon. It is good to have his views on the subject expressed in a single, clearly written and extremely useful volume. It can be recommended to students of the field at all levels.”—Philosophical Review

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After its publication in 1967, The Foundations of Scientific Inference taught a generation of students and researchers about the problem of induction, the interpretation of probability, and confirmation theory. Fifty years later, Wesley C. Salmon’s book remains one of the clearest introductions to these fundamental problems in the philosophy of science. With The Foundations of Scientific Inference, Salmon presented a coherent vision of the nature of scientific reasoning, explored the philosophical underpinnings of scientific investigation, and introduced readers to key movements in epistemology and to leading philosophers of the twentieth century—such as Karl Popper, Rudolf Carnap, and Hans Reichenbach—offering a critical assessment and developing his own distinctive views on topics that are still of central importance today.

This anniversary edition of Salmon’s foundational work in the philosophy of science features a detailed introduction by Christopher Hitchcock, which examines the book’s origins, influences, and major themes, its impact and enduring effects, the disputes it raised, and its place in current studies, revisiting Salmon’s ideas for a new audience of philosophers, historians, scientists, and students.

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