I can't say much about Gould’s strengths as a scientist, but for a long time I've regarded him as the second most influential historian of science (next to Thomas Kuhn).
It is seen as the application of a systematic “scientific method” involving wearing a white coat and being dull. I feel that too many young people come into science with this view, and that too many fields degenerate into the kind of work which results: automatic crank-turning and data-collecting of the sort which Kuhn calls “normal science” and Rutherford “stamp-collecting”. In fact, the creation of new science is a creative act, literally, and people who are not creative are not very good at it.phillip warren anderson
Before Kuhn , most scientists followed the place-a-stone-in-the-bright-temple-of-knowledge tradition, and would have told you that they hoped, above all, to lay many of the bricks, perhaps even the keystone, of truth's temple. Now most scientists of vision hope to foment revolution. We are, therefore, awash in revolutions, most self-proclaimed.stephen jay gould
The attitude of the true scientist towards the real limits of human understanding was unforgettably impressed on me in early youth by the obviously unpremeditated words of a great biologist; Alfred Kuhn finished a lecture to the Austrian Academy of Science with Goethe 's words, "It is the greatest joy of the man of thought to have explored the explorable and then calmly to revere the inexplorable." After the last word he hesitated, raised his hand in repudiation and cried, above the applause, "No, not calmly, gentlemen; not calmly !"Konrad Lorenz
Thomas Kuhn (1962) in his book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions divides all scientists into those who create new paradigms of science and those who work within the established paradigms. The same division may be applied to scholars and philosophers, namely into those who create new paradigms and into those who work within the established ones.
Up until the publication of Thomas Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions in 1962, the history, philosophy, and sociology of science maintained an internalist approach to scientific knowledge claims. Science was seen as somehow above any social, political, or cultural influences, and therefore, the examinations of scientific knowledge focused on areas such as 'discoveries,' 'famous men,' and 'the scientific revolution in the West.' When Kuhn opened the door to the possibility that external factors were involved in the development of scientific paradigms, science studies assumed a more critical tone.
Scientific enterprise , according to Kuhn revolution is exceptional and, indeed, extra-scienti?c, and criticism is, in ‘normal’ times, anathema...
...scientific enterprise , according to Kuhn revolution is exceptional and, indeed, extra-scienti?c, and criticism is, in ‘normal’ times, anathema.