What is the Subject of Science?June 28, 2021
The subject of science, which aims to produce knowledge, is the assets that are the subject of the knowledge to be produced.
These entities are all tangible objects and events in the universe that exist in the present, existed in the past and will exist in the future, and the facts related to them. Concrete objects are separated into individuals by masses. We use the word “mass” to mean “amount of matter” or “piece of matter”. Accordingly, a given substance is all masses of the same kind. The exponents of a substance type are also such masses. For example, copper, which is an element, water, which is a compound, and air, which is a mixture, are types of matter. Examples of these are masses of copper, water in a glass, and air in a room, respectively.
On the other hand, bodies such as atoms and stars, organisms such as bacteria and mammals, and persons (that is, organisms capable of thinking) are individuals. Events are changes in concrete objects at certain times and their interactions. For example, the color of a litmus paper changes from blue to red and the collision of two billiard balls is an event.
Facts are entities that make true propositions true. Every proposition has a corresponding situation. Fact means the situation that is real. An unreal situation is called a purely possible situation. The fact that a proposition is true means that the corresponding fact is true. Facts can be divided into simple facts, which correspond to true simple propositions, and non-simple facts, which correspond to true non-simple propositions. Accordingly, a simple phenomenon means that a concrete object has a certain feature or that there is a certain relationship between more than one object. For example, the negative electric charge of an electron and the rotation of the Earth around the Sun are simple phenomena.
On the other hand, non-simple facts name them according to the kinds of non-simple propositions that express them. Accordingly, the fact that the electric charge of an electron is not positive is a negation phenomenon, the mass of the Sun is 1.99×1030 kg and the radius of the Sun is 7×108 m is a universal-yestion phenomenon, a conditional phenomenon that expands if a certain copper wire is heated sufficiently, all metals It is a universal-conditional phenomenon that expands when sufficiently heated.
However, science does not examine the entities that are the subject in all their concreteness. The main subject of science is object systems obtained through abstraction and idealization from these entities.
Compiled by: Sociologist Ömer YILDIRIM
Source: Atatürk University Department of Sociology Lecture Notes for Grade 1 “Introduction to Philosophy”, “Introduction to Sociology” and Grade 3 “History of Contemporary Philosophy” (Ömer YILDIRIM); Open Education Philosophy Textbook