Karl Popper
Writings on Karl Popper

Guides to The Logic of Scientific DiscoveryThe Poverty of HistoricismThe Open SocietyConjectures & RefutationsObjective Knowledge

The Purpose of Popper
This is the first of a series of articles published in the Melbourne 'Age Monthly Review'. It provides an overview of Popper's life and work to indjcate the major problems and issues which he addressed. It also shows how his work has been widely misrepresented due to the prevalence of 'Henry Root' scholarship. 

Towards a Liberal Education: 
This is an early paper, written for the student newspaper at the University of Sydney. It challenges radical students to see that Popper had a lot to offer if they were really serious about improving the world rather than just talking about it.

Popper's Evolutionary Theory of Knowledge
This paper shows how Popper's ideas provide  a rational but radical alternative to the essentially conservative positions and attitudes that are promoted by traditional positivism, Kuhn, Lakatos and Feyerabend. 

Popper's Theory of Objective Knowledge
Popper's theory of objective knowledge has the potential to advance the discussion of many issues that has stalled due to the traditional subjectivist approach. This is illustrated with a number of examples ranging from philosophical analysis to the discussion of morals and the impact of imaginative literature.

Let's Get Metaphysical
This article introduces Popper's theory of metaphysical research programs. This theory  signaled his final break with positivism and it  provides a unifying principle  to integrate his work on many other topics.   

Essentialism &  the Organic State
Obsession with definitions and the meaning of words has muddied the stream of debate in many disciplines. This article shows how the intellectual error of essentialism has undermined the theory of democracy and the pursuit of freedom.

Unchanged Meanings
This paper shows how Popper's theory of objective knowledge supports previous work by Wellek and Warren in the theory of literature.  

Critical Preference in Science & Ethics
This is a draft, written with the benefit of Bartley's ideas, to show how both  the problem of induction and Hume's is/ought problem share a common structure and  are both resolved in the context of "critical preference" rather than the traditional context of "justified belief". 

Making Sense of Popper
A review of Hacohen's book on Popper, written for the Mises Newsleter.

Evolutionary Epistemology
Rationality and the Sociology of Knowledge
Radnitzky and Bartley edited this important collection of papers on a number of topics, demonstrating the fertility of the evolutionary approach that  dominated the latter part of Popper's career. 

The Austrian School of Economics as a Popperian Research Program
This paper is based on the talk delivered from notes at the Centenary Conference in Vienna. The aim of the paper is to point to the synergy that can be generated from a combination of Popper's metaphysics and the "Austrian" approach to economics and the human sciences.

on karl popper
Popper had quite a lot to say about education, mostly in scattered comments and notes. This is a collection of his statements on various aspects of that topic
This is a commentary on four papers 
Prepared for the Popper session at the 1989 meeting of the Mont Pelerin Society in Christchurch, New  Zealand.
The Duhem-Quine Problem
A Master's thesis exploring the various responses  to the uncertainty of experimental testing and the under-determination of theories. The responses include Popper, Lakatos, the Bayesians and the New Experimentalists.
Ian Jarvie has recently published a potentially revolutionary account of the  "social" or "conventional" turn in Popper's work. This review argues that Jarvie's work helps to elucidate the unity of Popper's thought in natural science, the social sciences, politics and moral discourse. 

W H Auden on the open and closed society
A remarkable paper, published in 1942, anticipating Popper's usage of  the terms "open society" and "closed society". Clearly this was an independent development, and there is no suggestion that Popper's usage derives from Auden.

Creative Self Criticism 
Popper on Science & Arts.

On Clouds and Clocks
Indeterminism, plastic controls, plans and intentions.

Colin Simkin on Popper and The Open Society
Popper's NZ friend recalls the trials and tribulations involved in the production of the classic work.

Bryan Magee on Popper.

Colin Simkin on a long friendship with John Hicks


Popper's Views on Natural and Social Science

PART 1  Introduction: Growth of Knowledge, Objectivity, Laws & Propensities, Metaphysical Research Programs.

PART 2  Social Science: Historicism, Situational Logic, Institutions & Traditions, Application to Economics.


Dan Hausman on Popper

The cost of Positivism in the 20th Century

Many critical articles on the Critical Rationalist blog.

For Very Busy People 

The Open Society and its Enemies Commentary
Start here.

Conjectures and Refutations Commentary
Start here

Science: Conjectures and Refutations
(Chapter 1 in Conjectures and Refutations.)

The Poverty of Historicism
Start here

Quantum Theory  & the Schism

Creative self criticism in science and art