Ings So what is the mangle It is the goal oriented and goal #revising dialectic of resistance and accommodation that reflects the mergently intertwined delineation and #dialectic of resistance and accommodation that reflects the mergently intertwined delineation and of machinic captures and human intentions practices and so on 23 This very helpful model leads Pickering to his position called pragmatic realism This type of realism would support an indefinitely diverse set of ontologies and suggests that scientific knowledge is both objective and relative 32 This last part is bound to raise hackles and cause This last part is bound to raise hackles and cause as it should specially from the straight up realists really who ven cares about positivism as a serious position these "days I m actually a fan of this result as it "I m actually a fan of this result as it the supremely contingent nature of the construction of scientific knowledge Pickering is careful to reject any synchronic or static definition of constraints which is how people usually try to argue that the possible ontologies simply can t be infinite Pickering rejects this way of thinking about constraints as pre judging the issue and once again taking scientific analysis out of time Pickering wants verything in time And in time constraints are practical not theoretical he invents the term machinic incommensurability here Kuhn referenceThis book cleared up a lot for me and in general I have to say that I agree with it It s been pointed out to me by many that the usefulness of Pickering s theoretical positions for the actual practice of history are far less clear as is Cinderella Unmasked (Fairytale Fantasies exemplified by his application sections and subseuent books but as a contribution to theory in science studies this book is one of the contemporary greats. Fic work both past and present Pickeringxamines in detail the building of the bubble chamber in particle physics the search for the uark the construction of the uarternion system in mathematics and the introduction of computer controlled machine tools in industry He uses these xamples to address the most basic lements of scientific practice the development of xperimental apparatus the production of facts the development of theory and the interrelation of machines and social organizati. ,
Provides an interesting theoretical bridge between physics and social science Beautiful thoughtful xploration of scientific pistemology based on case studies In particular the uestion of where scientific models and concepts come from presenting a challenge both to a the scientific orthodoxy that imagines an underlying stable physical reality to which scientific models hue ver closely through the scientific process and b the critiue coming from the sociology of science that scientific theories merely reflect the social context in which they are created and that they are designed to serve #Pickering Argues That Science Is #argues that science is kind of a partner dance between the physical world and the community of scientists in which both xert influence on the outcome through a process of tuningadjustingdialectic of resist Pickering s groundbreaking book seems to me to have cleared up many theoretical issues left behind by both SSK Sociology of Scientific Knowledge and ANT Actor Network Theory Pickering like Hacking starts by rejecting the representational idiom in which science is thought to be the activity of representing or creating a map of nature Instead Pickering wants to concern himself with the performative image of science in which science is regarded as a field of powers capacities and performances 7 "For Pickering Ignoring The Doing "Pickering ignoring the doing science is to completely miss the point of understanding the construction of scientific knowledge in the first place First Pickering goes after SSK s obsession with human agency see my review of Bloor for on this model Many SSK accounts posit that human interests drive the construction of scient. This ambitious book by one of the most original and provocative thinkers in science studies offers a sophisticated new understanding of the nature of scientific mathematical and ngineering practice and the production of scientific knowledgeAndrew Pickering offers a new approach to the unpredictable nature of change in science taking into account the xtraordinary number of factors social technological conceptual and natural that interact to affect the creation of scientific knowledge In
characters The Mangle of Practice Time Agency and ScienceIfic knowledge and argue that any seeming material or technological agency can be reduced to some sort of human agency This allows them to avoid Bloor s original concerns about the history of science getting reduced to a history of rror if we can tell the story via natural agency alone historians aren t needed or relevant it s just a matter of figuring out the ways that nature is speaking Pickering borrowing Bloor s terminology for "something ntirely different rather confusing the issue I might say called this
approach asymmetrical withasymmetrical with to agency In this model "entirely different rather confusing the issue I might say called this approach asymmetrical with respect to agency In this model his caricature of the model there is no room for natureOn the other hand ANT advocates symmetry between human and nonhuman agents Both according to writers like Latour work in concert to nroll other agents into agreement with Monsieur Pain experiments and models However Pickering points out what should really have been obvious to all of us human and nonhuman agents just aren t the same unless you reduce both of them to semiotic constructs In practice humans have intentions and goals while nonhuman agents do not For Pickering The world of intentionality is then constitutivelyngaged with the world of material agency 20 It is of particular importance to Pickering that modeling happens dynamically through and in time which means that the intentions and goals of scientists are conditioned by scientific cultures as the same time that scientists respond to captured material agency Pickering develops some flowery metaphors about the dance of agency in which a scientists ncounters resistances from the material world then seeks to accommodate models based on those find. Is view machines instruments facts theories conceptual and mathematical structures disciplined practices and human beings are in constantly shifting relationships with one another mangled together in unforeseeable ways that are shaped by the contingencies of culture time and place Situating material as well as human agency in their larger cultural context Pickering uses case studies to show how this picture of the open changeable nature of science advances a richer understanding of scienti. .