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Res Theory Nurs Pract. 2003 Spring;17(1):7-17.

Nursing knowledge and the problem of worldviews.

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  • 1University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada.


Over the past few decades, nurse scholars have widely embraced the idea of worldviews and of worldviews serving as the bases of conceptions of nursing. Today, worldviews are so much taken for granted as the starting point of nursing inquiry that nurse scholars are continually seeking solutions to epistemological problems within the idea of worldviews. This article argues that, as long as we persist in doing so, the nursing discipline's aim to develop an organized body of nursing knowledge for nursing practice will remain unrealized. I propose that conceptions of nursing and of nursing inquiry be grounded in the philosophy of moderate realism, which eschews the idea of worldviews.

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