Epistemology & Philosophy of Science
Volume 55, Issue 3, 2018
Constantine D. Skordoulis
Pages 172-187
DOI: 10.5840/eps201855356

*How Marxist History of Science Can Inform a Pedagogy of Science for Social

*The scope of this paper is to examine the perspectives for a pedagogy of
science for social justice situated in the framework of Marxism by
proceeding to an analysis and a contemporary evaluation of the work of the
scholars who are considered as the initiators of the Marxist history of
science. In this paper therefore, I review N. Bukharin’s and B. Hessen’s
seminal papers as presented in the 2nd International Congress of History of
Science and Technology in 1931 in London. This Congress was marked by the
appearance of the Soviet delegation influencing a generation of radical
scientists in Britain with the most prominent figure being J. Bernal. I
present J. Bernal’s views as developed in his most important work “The
Social Function of Science” with an emphasis on his writings on science
education and the role of science teachers for the emancipation of society.
Finally, I present the work of the Austromarxist and member of the Left
Vienna Circle E. Zilsel on “The Social Origin of Modern Science”
contemplating on his work as an adult educator in the period that Vienna
was governed by the Austrian Social Democratic Workers Party. Emphasis is
placed on the role of science and education as a vehicle for raising
proletarian self-awareness. The analysis of the legacies and works of these
scholars of the Marxist tradition in the history of science shows that it
can form the basis for a Marxist pedagogy of science that can change
society and its practices in our epoch when education in science and
pedagogy of science are considered one of the most important pillars of
contemporary science policy.*

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