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As a powerful tool in the production of knowledge, comparing plays a crucial part in the sciences and the humanities. This volume explores the relationship between comparing and narrating in epistemic practices and clarifies the ways in which narratives enable or impede practices of comparing. It takes into account related activities, such as measuring and classifying, modeling, establishing norms and categories, as well as organizing and popularizing knowledge, to analyze the ambivalent relationship between narratives, scientific explanation, and understanding. The contributions bring out the epistemic role of narratives, and elucidate how narratives are connected to comparisons and scientific explanations.
Martin Carrier, born in 1955, teaches philosophy of science at Bielefeld University. His research is directed at methodological characteristics of science in the context of practice, that is, research targeted at economically or politically relevant fields.Rebecca Mertens (PhD), born in 1984, is a postdoctoral researcher in the history and philosophy of science at the University of Bielefeld, Germany. She works on the role of analogies, models and forms of comparison in the history of molecular genetics and is a member of the collaborative research program "Practices of Comparison: Ordering and Changing the World". During her graduate and doctoral studies, she was a visiting scholar at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris and a visiting graduate fellow at the Minnesota Center for Philosophy of Science.Carsten Reinhardt, born in 1966, teaches history of science at Bielefeld University. His research fields are the history of twentieth-century physical sciences, methods development, and expertise.
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