International Journal of
Sociology and Anthropology

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Sociol. Anthropol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2006-988X
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJSA
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 305


Kuhn and the actual practice of science: Examining the extent to which Kuhn’s analysis is scientific

Kennedy Onkware1*, Janet Kassilly Nasambu Barasa1 and Felix Nguzo Kioli2
  1Department of Peace and Conflict Studies, Masinde Muliro University, PO BOX 190-50100 Kakamega-Kenya. 2Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Maseno University, Kenya.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 30 August 2011
  •  Published: 30 November 2011



In the structure of scientific revolutions hereunder referred to as SSR (1962), Kuhn claimed to have captured correctly how science is practiced. However, his critics such as Shapere (1984) argued that Kuhn’s account is far from being a true account of how science is practiced. Consequently, this led to a philosophical dispute on whether or not Kuhn’s work was a correct interpretation of how science is practiced. In the light of the foregoing debate Kuhn published his The Essential Tension (1977) to defend his position in his earlier book the SSR. In the context of this debate, this article is a philosophical analysis to determine whether or not Kuhn’s SSR is a correct empirical description of how science is practiced.


Key words: Practice of science, Kuhn, paradigm, paradigmatic science, science, scientific method.