Natural Laws, Universals, and the Induction Problem

Philosophia 32 (1-4):241-251 (2005)
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This paper contends that some of the recent critical appraisals of universals theories of natural laws, namely, van Fraassen's analysis of Armstrong's probabilistic laws, are largely ineffective since they fail to disclose the incompatibility of universals and any realistic natural law setting. Rather, a more profitable line of criticism is developed that contests the universalists' claim to have resolved the induction problem (i.e., the separation of natural laws from mere accidental regularities), and thereby reveals the universals' philosophically inadequate concept of a physical property.
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What is a Law of Nature?Armstrong, D. M.
Renewing Philosophy.Putnam, Hilary
Words and Life.Putnam, Hilary
Words and Life.Putnam, Hilary & Conant, James

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