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Constructive empiricism and the argument from underdetermination

In Bradley John Monton (ed.), Images of Empiricism: Essays on Science and Stances, with a Reply From Bas C. Van Fraassen. Oxford University Press (2007)

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  1. The Anti-Realist Explanation for Science's Success: Semantics, Method and Attitude.Bruno Malavolta E. Silva - 2020 - Kriterion - Journal of Philosophy 34 (4):15-44.
    Antirealist explanations for the success of science have been widely discussed up to today and have received several formulations. This makes it rather complex to assess them all. The objective of this paper is to help understand and assess the proposal of an anti-realist explanation for science’s success. I show the core assumptions contained in the several anti-realist explanations, how they relate to each other, and which background assumptions are required in order to warrant each position. I argue that, since (...)
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  • How the Growth of Science Ends Theory Change.Ludwig Fahrbach - 2011 - Synthese 180 (2):139-155.
    This paper outlines a defense of scientific realism against the pessimistic meta- induction which appeals to the phenomenon of the exponential growth of science. Here, scientific realism is defined as the view that our current successful scientific theories are mostly approximately true, and pessimistic meta- induction is the argument that projects the occurrence of past refutations of successful theories to the present concluding that many or most current successful scientific theories are false. The defense starts with the observation that at (...)
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  • A Modest Refutation of Manifestationalism.Alessio Gava - 2019 - Universitas Philosophica 36 (73):259-287.
    In their recent “A modest defense of manifestationalism” (2015), Asay and Bordner defend this position from a quite famous criticism put forward by Rosen (1994), according to which while manifestationalism can be seen as more compatible with the letter of empiricism than other popular stances, such as constructive empiricism, it fails nonetheless to make sense of science. The two authors reckon that Rosen’s argument is actually flawed. In their view, manifestationalism could in fact represent a legitimate thesis about the nature (...)
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  • The “Positive Argument” for Constructive Empiricism and Inference to the Best Explanation.Moti Mizrahi - 2018 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 49 (3):461–466.
    In this paper, I argue that the “positive argument” for Constructive Empiricism (CE), according to which CE “makes better sense of science, and of scientific activity, than realism does” (van Fraassen 1980, 73), is an Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE). But constructive empiricists are critical of IBE, and thus they have to be critical of their own “positive argument” for CE. If my argument is sound, then constructive empiricists are in the awkward position of having to reject their own (...)
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  • Scientific Realism.Richard Boyd - 1984 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy 21 (1&2):767-791.
    (i) Scientific realism is primarily a metaphysical doctrine about the existence and nature of the unobservables of science. (ii) There are good explanationist arguments for realism, most famously that from the success of science, provided abduction is allowed. Abduction seems to be on an equal footing, at least, with other ampliative methods of inference. (iii) We have no reason to believe a doctrine of empirical equivalence that would sustain the underdetermination argument against realism. (iv) The key to defending realism from (...)
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  • Scientific Realism.Anjan Chakravartty - 2011 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Debates about scientific realism are closely connected to almost everything else in the philosophy of science, for they concern the very nature of scientific knowledge. Scientific realism is a positive epistemic attitude toward the content of our best theories and models, recommending belief in both observable and unobservable aspects of the world described by the sciences. This epistemic attitude has important metaphysical and semantic dimensions, and these various commitments are contested by a number of rival epistemologies of science, known collectively (...)
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