Abstract The idea that we are living in the Anthropocene, a new geological epoch defined by human activity, has gained substantial currency across the academy and with the broader public. Within the earth sciences, however, the question of the Anthropocene is hotly debated, and recognized as a question that gets at both the foundations of geological science, and at issues of broad philosophical importance. For example, official recognition of the Anthropocene requires us to find a way to use the methods of historical science to make predictions. It also involves determining the role that political motivations should play in establishing scientific kinds. I bring the perspective of philosophy of science to bear on these questions, ultimately arguing that formal recognition of the Anthropocene should be indefinitely deferred. © The Author 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of British Society for the Philosophy of Science. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/about_us/legal/notices)
The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science – Oxford University Press
Published: Mar 14, 2018
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