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Constructive Empiricism in a Social World: Reply to Richard Healey

Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective (2019)

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  1. Inference to the Best Explanation and van Fraassen’s Contextual Theory of Explanation: Reply to Park.Yunus Prasetya - forthcoming - Axiomathes:1-11.
    Seungbae Park argues that Bas van Fraassen’s rejection of inference to the best explanation (IBE) is problematic for his contextual theory of explanation because van Fraassen uses IBE to support the contextual theory. This paper provides a defense of van Fraassen’s views from Park’s objections. I point out three weaknesses of Park’s objection against van Fraassen. First, van Fraassen may be perfectly content to accept the implications that Park claims to follow from his views. Second, even if van Fraassen rejects (...)
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  • The Contextual Theory of Explanation and Inference to the Best Explanation.Seungbae Park - forthcoming - Axiomathes:1-16.
    Van Fraassen explains rejections and asymmetries in science in terms of his contextual theory of explanation in the same way that scientists explain observable phenomena in the world in terms of scientific theories. I object that van Fraassen’s skeptical view regarding inference to the best explanation together with the English view of rationality jointly imply that the contextual theory is not rationally compelling, so van Fraassen and his epistemic colleagues can rationally disbelieve it. Prasetya replies that the truth of the (...)
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