Against Method: Outline of an Anarchistic Theory of Knowledge
A nice first printing of the 20th century philosopher's best-known work, an incendiary attack on the scientific method. Using as his principal case study Galileo's theory of heliocentrism, Feyerabend argues that few scientific advances can be ascribed purely to empiricist methodology, and that instead an opportunistic "epistemological anarchism" governs much, if not all, of scientific development. The book was originally conceived as one half of a debate volume, For and Against Method, with Hungarian philosopher Imre Lakatos, but was published alone following Lakatos' death in 1974. In his 1994 autobiography, Killing Time, Feyerabend refers to Against Method not as a book but as a "collage" of ideas and arguments he'd been exploring in various forms over the preceding years: "I arranged them in a suitable order, added transitions, replaced moderate passages with more outrageous ones, and called the result 'anarchism.'" Self-deprecation notwithstanding, Feyerabend's book remains One of the 20th century's most influential and controversial works in the philosophy of science.
London: NLB [New Left Books], 1975. First edition. Octavo (5.75 x 8.5 in.); 339p., with name and subject indexes; gray textured paper boards, silver lettering on spine and front board; in unclipped ("£5.75") dustjacket. Near fine, with light toning to board extremities, one minor spot of soiling to textblock fore-edge, and former owner's bookplate on front paste-down. In a very good (+) jacket, lightly edgeworn and with some laminate bubbling along the rear flap fore-edge.