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  1. Metaphysical Foundationalism and Theoretical Unification.Andrew Brenner - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-21.
    Some facts ground other facts. Some fact is fundamental iff there are no other facts which partially or fully ground that fact. According to metaphysical foundationalism, every non-fundamental fact is fully grounded by some fundamental fact. In this paper I examine and defend some neglected considerations which might be made in favor of metaphysical foundationalism. Building off of work by Ross Cameron, I suggest that foundationalist theories are more unified than, and so in one important respect simpler than, non-foundationalist theories, (...)
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  • Cognitive Archaeology and the Minimum Necessary Competence Problem.Anton Killin & Ross Pain - forthcoming - Biological Theory:1-15.
    Cognitive archaeologists attempt to infer the cognitive and cultural features of past hominins and their societies from the material record. This task faces the problem of minimum necessary competence: as the most sophisticated thinking of ancient hominins may have been in domains that leave no archaeological signature, it is safest to assume that tool production and use reflects only the lower boundary of cognitive capacities. Cognitive archaeology involves selecting a model from the cognitive sciences and then assessing some aspect of (...)
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  • Ontologically Simple Theories Do Not Indicate the True Nature of Complex Biological Systems: Three Test Cases.Michael Fry - 2020 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 42 (2):1-44.
    A longstanding philosophical premise perceives simplicity as a desirable attribute of scientific theories. One of several raised justifications for this notion is that simple theories are more likely to indicate the true makeup of natural systems. Qualitatively parsimonious hypotheses and theories keep to a minimum the number of different postulated entities within a system. Formulation of such ontologically simple working hypotheses proved to be useful in the experimental probing of narrowly defined bio systems. It is less certain, however, whether qualitatively (...)
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  • The Methodological Implications of Reference Magnetism on Moral Twin Earth.David Mokriski - 2020 - Metaphilosophy 51 (5):702-726.
    The Moral Twin Earth challenge to ethical naturalism threatens to undermine an otherwise promising metaethical view by showing that typical, naturalist-friendly theories of reference determination predict diverging reference in Twin Earth scenarios, making it difficult to account for substantive moral disagreement. Several theorists have recently invoked David Lewis’s doctrine of reference magnetism as a solution, claiming that a highly elite moral property—a moral “joint in nature”—could secure shared reference between ourselves and our twins on Twin Earth, despite our diverging usages (...)
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  • Uniqueness and Modesty: How Permissivists Can Live on the Edge.Darren Bradley - forthcoming - Mind.
    There is a divide in epistemology between those who think that, for any hypothesis and set of total evidence, there is a unique rational credence in that hypothesis, and those who think that there can be many rational credences. Schultheis offers a novel and potentially devastating objection to Permissivism, on the grounds that Permissivism permits dominated credences. I will argue that Permissivists can plausibly block Schultheis' argument. The issue turns on getting clear about whether we should be certain whether our (...)
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  • Simplicity and Complexity in Metaphysics.Aleksandr Kulieshov - 2018 - Path of Science 4 (6).
    The article deals with the problem of simple and complex objects in metaphysical research. It is stated that the ultimate simplification of reality theoretical models follows from the nature of metaphysical knowledge. The modern metaphysical conceptions of fundamental simplicity and fundamental complexity of existing objects are discussed. They are the conceptions of full and distributional monism, mereological nihilism, and the traditional binary or binary-based models of the foundations of reality, ascending to Aristotle. The paper shows that these conceptions and ideas (...)
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