Humean Supervenience Rebugged

Philosophia 42 (4):959-970 (2014)
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This paper is a response to Lewis’ ‘Humean Supervenience Debugged’ . Lewis was in the business of defending Humean Supervenience, and the project seemed successful until the case of chance. Lewis thus originally named chance the ‘big bad bug’ for Humean Supervenience until the aforementioned paper in which he claims victory. Here I argue that he was unsuccessful and that Humean Supervenience remains bugged by chance. I will show how this bug remains due to a misdiagnosis of where the problem lies with regard to undermining. First, I define Humean Supervenience and chance, and state the bug in its original form, then secondly I describe Lewis’ attempt to remove the bug. Thirdly, I explain why the bug persists, despite Lewis’ efforts, and show the real source of the undermining problem to be due to the circularity of Humean Supervenient style accounts of chance. Finally I describe the situation this leaves chance in, and show how the incompatibility of chance and Humean Supervenience is evidence for the nonexistence of chance. I conclude that it is the circularity of the formation of Humean Supervenient laws of chance which continue to bug Humean Supervenience, leaving it untenable and resulting in little chance for chance
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