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The Unaccountable Element in Science1

  • Michael Polanyi (a1)

I hope that it will become clear in the course of this paper what I mean by calling some elements of science unaccountable. Let me now say only that I shall speak of the contributions made to scientific thought by acts of personal judgment which cannot be replaced by the operation of explicit reasoning. I shall try to show that such tacit operations play a decisive part not only in the discovery, but in the very holding of scientific knowledge. I shall outline the structure of these acts and indicate to what extent this structure offers a justification for relying on such acts.

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  • ISSN: 0031-8191
  • EISSN: 1469-817X
  • URL: /core/journals/philosophy
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