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  1. Backing Without Realism.Elanor Taylor - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-21.
    Facts about explanation are often taken as a guide to facts about metaphysics. Such inferences from explanation to metaphysics typically rely on two elements: explanatory realism, the view that it is a characteristic and necessary aspect of explanation to give information about metaphysical structure, and a backing model of explanation, according to which explanations are backed by supporting relations, such as causation. Combining explanatory realism with a backing model permits conclusions about metaphysics to follow straightforwardly from facts about explanation, and (...)
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  • Si può spiegare un’identità?Massimiliano Carrara - 2018 - Rivista Italiana di Filosofia del Linguaggio 1:31-5.
    In this paper we reconstruct an argument, based on the observations of David Lewis and Jaegwon Kim, according to which, given that identities are necessary, they cannot be grounded; and given that they cannot be grounded, they cannot be explained either. We argue against two key premises of this argument. Furthermore, we present two counterexamples, in the form of two alleged sets of cases of explanation of identities. This argument against the explanation of identities is instrumental for a wider discussion (...)
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  • What is Field's Epistemological Objection to Platonism?Ylwa Sjölin Wirling - 2019 - In Robin Stenwall & Tobias Hansson Wahlberg (eds.), Maurinian Truths : Essays in Honour of Anna-Sofia Maurin on her 50th Birthday. pp. 123-133.
    This paper concerns an epistemological objection against mathematical platonism, due to Hartry Field.The argument poses an explanatory challenge – the challenge to explain the reliability of our mathematical beliefs – which the platonist, it’s argued, cannot meet. Is the objection compelling? Philosophers disagree, but they also disagree on (and are sometimes very unclear about) how the objection should be understood. Here I distinguish some options, and highlight some gaps that need to be filled in on the potentially most compelling version (...)
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  • Grounding Nominalism.Peter Schulte - 2019 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 100 (2):482-505.
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  • Should explanation be a guide to ground?Alexander Skiles & Kelly Trogdon - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (12):4083-4098.
    Grounding and explanation are said to be intimately connected. Some even maintain that grounding just is a form of explanation. But grounding and explanation also seem importantly different—on the face of it, the former is ‘worldy’ or ‘objective’ while the latter isn’t. In this paper, we develop and respond to an argument to the effect that there is no way to fruitfully address this tension that retains orthodox views about grounding and explanation but doesn’t undermine a central piece of methodology, (...)
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  • Fundamentality and the Existence of God.Joshua R. Sijuwade - 2021 - Manuscrito 44 (4):93-168.
    In this article, I seek to assess the extent to which Theism, the claim that there is a God, can provide a true fundamental explanation for the existence of certain entities within the layered structure of reality. More precisely, I assume the cogency of Swinburne’s explanatory framework and seek to resituate it within a new philosophical context-that of the field of contemporary metaphysics-which will enable me to develop a true fundamental explanation for the existence of the non- fundamental entities that (...)
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  • Backing as Truthmaking.Alexios Stamatiadis-Bréhier - 2021 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 51 (5):367–383.
    Separatists about grounding take explanations to be separate from their corresponding grounding-facts. Grounding-facts are supposed to underlie, or back, such explanations. However, the backing relation hasn’t received much attention in the literature. The aim of this paper is to provide an informative definition of backing. First, I examine two prominent proposals: backing as explaining (Kovacs 2017; 2019a) and backing as grounding (see Sjölin Wirling 2020). Finally, I put forward my own proposal. I argue that under plausible assumptions about the role (...)
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  • The Grounding of Identities.Lorenzo Azzano & Massimiliano Carrara - 2021 - Philosophia 49 (5):1943-1952.
    A popular stance amongst philosophers is one according to which, in Lewis’ words, “identity is utterly simple and unproblematic”. Building from Lewis’ famous passage on the matter, we reconstruct, and then criticize, an argument to the conclusion that identities cannot be grounded. With the help of relatively uncontroversial assumption concerning identity facts, we show that not all identities are equi-fundamental, and, on the contrary, some appear to be provided potential grounding bases using two-level identity criteria. Further potential grounding bases for (...)
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  • An Explanatory Idealist Theory of Grounding.David Mark Kovacs - forthcoming - Noûs.
    How is grounding related to metaphysical explanation? The standard view is that the former somehow “backs”, “undergirds” or “underlies” the latter. This view fits into a general picture of explanation, according to which explanations in general hold in virtue of a certain elite group of “explanatory relations” or “determinative relations” that back them. This paper turns the standard view on its head: grounding doesn't “back” metaphysical explanation but is in an important sense downstream from it. I call this view “grounding (...)
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  • In Virtue Of: Determination, Dependence, and Metaphysically Opaque Grounding.Henrik Rydéhn - 2019 - Dissertation, Uppsala University
    This dissertation investigates grounding, the relation of non-causal determination whereby one fact obtains in virtue of some other fact or facts. Although considerations of grounding have been central throughout Western philosophy, the last 15-20 years have seen a renaissance of systematic work on grounding in analytic philosophy. The aim of the dissertation is to contribute to our understanding of the nature of grounding and its relation to other central phenomena in metaphysics. -/- Chapter 1 of the dissertation provides a brief (...)
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  • Grounding Eternal Generation.Joshua Sijuwade - forthcoming - Faith and Philosophy.
    This article aims to provide an explication of the Christian doctrine of eternal generation. A model of the doctrine is formulated within the ground-theoretic framework of Jonathan Schaffer and E. Jonathan Lowe, which enables it to be explicated clearly and consistently, and two often raised objections against the doctrine can be successfully answered.
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  • Identity Criteria: An Epistemic Path to Conceptual Grounding.Massimiliano Carrara & Ciro De Florio - 2020 - Synthese 197 (7):3151-3169.
    Are identity criteria grounding principles? A prima facie answer to this question is positive. Specifically, two-level identity criteria can be taken as principles related to issues of identity among objects of a given kind compared with objects of a more basic kind. Moreover, they are grounding metaphysical principles of some objects with regard to others. In the first part of the paper we criticise this prima facie natural reading of identity criteria. This result does not mean that identity criteria could (...)
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  • Maurinian Truths : Essays in Honour of Anna-Sofia Maurin on Her 50th Birthday.Robin Stenwall & Tobias Hansson Wahlberg (eds.) - 2019 - Lund, Sverige: Department of Philosophy, Lund University.
    This book is in honour of Professor Anna-Sofia Maurin on her 50th birthday. It consists of eighteen essays on metaphysical issues written by Swedish and international scholars.
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  • Normative Explanation Unchained.Pekka Väyrynen - 2021 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 103 (2):278-297.
    [This paper is available as open access from the publisher.] Normative theories aim to explain why things have the normative features they have. This paper argues that, contrary to some plausible existing views, one important kind of normative explanations which first-order normative theories aim to formulate and defend can fail to transmit downward along chains of metaphysical determination of normative facts by non-normative facts. Normative explanation is plausibly subject to a kind of a justification condition whose satisfaction may fail to (...)
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  • Do Identity and Distinctness Facts Threaten the PSR?Erica Shumener - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (4):1023-1041.
    One conception of the Principle of Sufficient Reason maintains that every fact is metaphysically explained. There are different ways to challenge this version of the PSR; one type of challenge involves pinpointing a specific set of facts that resist metaphysical explanation. Certain identity and distinctness facts seem to constitute such a set. For example, we can imagine a scenario in which we have two qualitatively identical spheres, Castor and Pollux. Castor is distinct from Pollux but it is unclear what could (...)
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  • Fundamental Yet Grounded.Joaquim Giannotti - 2021 - Theoria 87 (3):578-599.
    Grounding is claimed to offer a promising characterization of the fundamental as thatwhich is ungrounded. Detractors of this view argue that there can be fundamental and yet mutuallygrounded entities. Such a possibility undermines the denition of the fundamental as theungrounded. I aim to show, however, that the possibility of fundamental mutually grounded entitiesdoes not force us to renounce the prospects of characterizing fundamentality in terms of ground-ing. To accomplish this aim, I defend a grounding-based view that accommodates fundamentalmutually grounded entities (...)
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  • What Cancer Is.J. James Frost - unknown
    The problem of cancer is examined from the metaphysical standpoint of essence and ground. An essentialist definition of cancer is assumed that would be valid in all possible worlds in which cancer could logically exist. The grounds of cancer are then examined and elucidated. Two grounding cancer properties are identified and discussed: symmetry- breaking and computational intelligence. Each examination leads to concrete conclusions for novel therapeutic approaches and a more fundamental understanding of what cancer is at bottom. Other possible cancer (...)
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  • Metaphysical Explanations for Modal Normativists.Theodore Locke - 2020 - Metaphysics 3 (1):33-54.
    I expand modal normativism, a theory of metaphysical modality, to give a normativist account of metaphysical explanation. According to modal normativism, basic modal claims do not have a descriptive function, but instead have the normative function of enabling language users to express semantic rules that govern the use of ordinary non-modal vocabulary. However, a worry for modal normativism is that it doesn’t keep up with all of the important and interesting metaphysics we can do by giving and evaluating metaphysical explanations. (...)
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  • Is Backing Grounding?Ylwa Sjölin Wirling - 2020 - Ratio 33 (3):129-137.
    Separatists are grounding theorists who hold that grounding relations and metaphysical explanations are distinct, yet intimately connected in the sense that grounding relations back metaphysical explanations, just as causal relations back causal explanations. But Separatists have not elaborated on the nature of the ‘backing’ relation. In this paper, I argue that backing is a form of (partial) grounding. In particular, backing has many of the properties commonly attributed to grounding, and taking backing to be partial grounding allows Separatists to make (...)
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  • Metaphysically explanatory unification.David Mark Kovacs - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (6):1659-1683.
    This paper develops and motivates a unification theory of metaphysical explanation, or as I will call it, Metaphysical Unificationism. The theory’s main inspiration is the unification account of scientific explanation, according to which explanatoriness is a holistic feature of theories that derive a large number of explananda from a meager set of explanantia, using a small number of argument patterns. In developing Metaphysical Unificationism, I will point out that it has a number of interesting consequences. The view offers a novel (...)
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  • Too Many Omissions, Too Much Causation?Björn Petersson - 2019 - In Tobias Hansson Wahlberg & Robin Stenwall (eds.), Maurinian Truths : Essays in Honour of Anna-Sofia Maurin on her 50th Birthday.
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  • Response to Leuenberger, Shumener and Thompson.Karen Bennett - 2019 - Analysis 79 (2):327-340.
    I am very grateful to Stephan Leuenberger, Erica Shumener and Naomi Thompson for their excellent and thoughtful commentaries on Making Things Up. I have learned a lot from thinking through their replies. As it happens, they focus on pretty disparate aspects of the book: necessitation, relative fundamentality, and what builds the building facts, respectively. I will thus engage with their remarks separately.
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  • Is Building Built?Naomi Thompson - 2019 - Analysis 79 (2):315-327.
    Karen Bennett’s Making Things Up argues that talk of generation and construction, giving rise to, and getting one thing out of another are to be understood in terms of building. Building-talk is commonplace if not ubiquitous in philosophy, and so building is one of the most important philosophical notions. Making Things Up offers a refreshing perspective on the debate about structure and fundamentality. Whilst Bennett of course engages with the recent literature, she sets things up in her own terms, and (...)
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  • Questions and Answers: Metaphysical Explanation and the Structure of Reality.Naomi Thompson - 2019 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 5 (1):98-116.
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