|quine: terms in translation|
quine home > scientism
Scientism is the belief that science is the only legitimate method of attaining the truth. According to scientism, only empirical concepts, ones that can be tested scientifically, can ever be considered truthful. As a result, all metaphysical contentions must be disregarded and invalidated. It should be noted, however, that the idea of scientism is fundamentally flawed due to the very nature of its ideals. It cannot be scientifically proven that science is the only means by which the truth is attainable, and therefore the view is, in a sense, self-destructive.
Naturalized epistemologists, including Quine, have been accused of scientism when they explicitly or implicitly claim that epistemology can be replaced by scientific disciplines such as cognitive science. Many philosophers believe that a philosophical approach to epistemology which does not ignore the human condition and which does not approach knowledge reductionistically won't (and shouldn't) be eliminated.
Robert Todd Carroll. The Skeptic's Dictionary. www.skepdic.com/scientism.html
Lorraine Code, "What is Natural about Epistemology Naturalized?" in Feminist Interpretations of W.V. Quine, ed. by Lynn Hankinson Nelson and Jack Nelson, Penn State Press, 2003.