April 10, 2019

Ana Katić The concept of fiction in science and literature

Models in experimental practice have a dominant role. Accordingly, the question of the relationship between fiction and science is an important topic in the contemporary philosophy of science. In this philosophical context, the first failure is that different authors differ considerably in defining fiction in the case of scientific models. Since the model is always a representation of something, the first part of the presentation is a typological proposal for model differentiation using two types of false representation: fictional and fictitious. The usefulness of defining fiction in this way is shown on the example of digital organisms in biology. Another failure that the author finds is the misunderstanding and oversimplification of the potential cognitive role played by fiction in literature. Therefore, the second part of the exposition concerns the attempt to present the cognitive potential of the literary work by making the difference between the two types of truth that we can find in it: an explicit truth, and an implicit or contextual truth. These two types of truths in literature correspond to the distinction between two types of representation in scientific models. Fiction analysis solutions represent a response to Giere’s critique of the comparison between models and literary fiction.

Ana Katić is a PhD student at the Department of Philosophy at the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade. She writes a dissertation titled “Pathway toward superorganism: The evolutionary integration of biological functions and its philosophical importance”. The subject of her interest includes the philosophy of biology, the analysis of complex systems, analytical metaphysics, and interdisciplinary research, such as bioethics and future studies.

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