Switch to: Citations

References in:

Is understanding explanatory or objectual?

Synthese 190 (6):1153-1171 (2013)

Add references

You must login to add references.
  1. The Value of Knowledge and the Pursuit of Understanding.Jonathan L. Kvanvig - 2003 - Cambridge University Press.
    Epistemology has for a long time focused on the concept of knowledge and tried to answer questions such as whether knowledge is possible and how much of it there is. Often missing from this inquiry, however, is a discussion on the value of knowledge. In The Value of Knowledge and the Pursuit of Understanding Jonathan Kvanvig argues that epistemology properly conceived cannot ignore the question of the value of knowledge. He also questions one of the most fundamental assumptions in epistemology, (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   168 citations  
  • The Value of Understanding.Jonathan Kvanvig - 2009 - In Pritchard, Haddock & MIllar (eds.), Epistemic Value. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 95--112.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   42 citations  
  • Causal Explanation.David K. Lewis - 1986 - In David Lewis (ed.), Philosophical Papers Vol. Ii. Oxford University Press. pp. 214-240.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   196 citations  
  • Scientific Explanation and the Sense of Understanding.J. D. Trout - 2002 - Philosophy of Science 69 (2):212-233.
    Scientists and laypeople alike use the sense of understanding that an explanation conveys as a cue to good or correct explanation. Although the occurrence of this sense or feeling of understanding is neither necessary nor sufficient for good explanation, it does drive judgments of the plausibility and, ultimately, the acceptability, of an explanation. This paper presents evidence that the sense of understanding is in part the routine consequence of two well-documented biases in cognitive psychology: overconfidence and hindsight. In light of (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   109 citations  
  • Understanding, Knowledge, and Scientific Antirealism.Kareem Khalifa - 2011 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 83 (1):93-112.
    Epistemologists have recently debated whether understanding is a species of knowledge. However, because they have offered little in the way of a detailed analysis of understanding, they lack the resources to resolve this issue. In this paper, I propose that S understands why p if and only if S has the non-Gettierised true belief that p, and for some proposition q, S has the non-Gettierised true belief that q is the best available explanation of p, S can correctly explain p (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   15 citations  
  • Understanding and the Facts.Catherine Elgin - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 132 (1):33 - 42.
    If understanding is factive, the propositions that express an understanding are true. I argue that a factive conception of understanding is unduly restrictive. It neither reflects our practices in ascribing understanding nor does justice to contemporary science. For science uses idealizations and models that do not mirror the facts. Strictly speaking, they are false. By appeal to exemplification, I devise a more generous, flexible conception of understanding that accommodates science, reflects our practices, and shows a sufficient but not slavish sensitivity (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   89 citations  
  • Explanatory Inquiry and the Need for Explanation.Stephen R. Grimm - 2008 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 59 (3):481-497.
    Explanatory inquiry characteristically begins with a certain puzzlement about the world. But why do certain situations elicit our puzzlement while others leave us, in some epistemically relevant sense, cold? Moreover, what exactly is involved in the move from a state of puzzlement to a state where one's puzzlement is satisfied? In this paper I try to answer both of these questions. I also suggest ways in which our account of scientific rationality might benefit from having a better sense of the (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   13 citations  
  • Is Understanding a Species of Knowledge?Stephen R. Grimm - 2006 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 57 (3):515-535.
    Among philosophers of science there seems to be a general consensus that understanding represents a species of knowledge, but virtually every major epistemologist who has thought seriously about understanding has come to deny this claim. Against this prevailing tide in epistemology, I argue that understanding is, in fact, a species of knowledge: just like knowledge, for example, understanding is not transparent and can be Gettiered. I then consider how the psychological act of "grasping" that seems to be characteristic of understanding (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   113 citations  
  • Linguistic Understanding and Belief.Steven A. Gross - 2005 - Mind 114 (453):61-66.
    Comment on Dean Pettit, who replies in same issue.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   9 citations  
  • Contrastive Explanation and the Demons of Determinism.C. Hitchcock - 1999 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 50 (4):585-612.
    It it tempting to think that if an outcome had some probability of not occurring, then we cannot explain why that outcome in fact occurred. Despite this intuition, most philosophers of science have come to admit the possibility of indeterministic explanation. Yet some of them continue to hold that if an outcome was not determined, it cannot be explained why that outcome rather than some other occurred. I argue that this is an untenable compromise: if indeterministic explanation is possible, then (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   30 citations  
  • Conceptual Revolutions.Paul THAGARD - 1992 - Princeton University Press.
    In this path-breaking work, Paul Thagard draws on history and philosophy of science, cognitive psychology, and the field of artificial intelligence to develop a ...
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   190 citations  
  • Explaining Explanation.David-Hillel RUBEN - 1990 - Routledge.
    This book introduces readers to the topic of explanation. The insights of Plato, Aristotle, J.S. Mill and Carl Hempel are examined, and are used to argue against the view that explanation is merely a problem for the philosophy of science. Having established its importance for understanding knowledge in general, the book concludes with a bold and original explanation of explanation.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   23 citations  
  • The Nature of Explanation.Peter Achinstein - 1983 - Oxford University Press.
    Offering a new approach to scientific explanation, this book focuses initially on the explaining act itself.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   106 citations  
  • Scientific Explanation and the Causal Structure of the World.Wesley Salmon - 1984 - Princeton University Press.
    The philosophical theory of scientific explanation proposed here involves a radically new treatment of causality that accords with the pervasively statistical character of contemporary science. Wesley C. Salmon describes three fundamental conceptions of scientific explanation--the epistemic, modal, and ontic. He argues that the prevailing view is untenable and that the modal conception is scientifically out-dated. Significantly revising aspects of his earlier work, he defends a causal/mechanical theory that is a version of the ontic conception. Professor Salmon's theory furnishes a robust (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   433 citations  
  • Aspects of Scientific Explanation and Other Essays in the Philosophy of Science.Carl Hempel - 1965 - The Free Press.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   291 citations  
  • Inference to the Best Explanation.Peter Lipton - 1993 - Routledge/Taylor and Francis Group.
    How do we go about weighing evidence, testing hypotheses, and making inferences? The model of " inference to the best explanation " -- that we infer the hypothesis that would, if correct, provide the best explanation of the available evidence--offers a compelling account of inferences both in science and in ordinary life. Widely cited by epistemologists and philosophers of science, IBE has nonetheless remained little more than a slogan. Now this influential work has been thoroughly revised and updated, and features (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   243 citations  
  • Making Things Happen: A Theory of Causal Explanation.James Woodward - 2003 - Oxford University Press.
    Woodward's long awaited book is an attempt to construct a comprehensive account of causation explanation that applies to a wide variety of causal and explanatory claims in different areas of science and everyday life. The book engages some of the relevant literature from other disciplines, as Woodward weaves together examples, counterexamples, criticisms, defenses, objections, and replies into a convincing defense of the core of his theory, which is that we can analyze causation by appeal to the notion of manipulation.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   586 citations  
  • ``Is Understanding Factive?".Catherine Z. Elgin - 2009 - In Adrian Haddock, Alan Millar & Duncan Pritchard (eds.), Epistemic Value. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 322--30.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   70 citations  
  • From Knowledge to Understanding.Catherine Z. Elgin - 2006 - In Stephen Hetherington (ed.), Epistemology Futures. Oxford University Press. pp. 199--215.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   33 citations  
  • Recovering Understanding.Linda Zagzebski - 2001 - In M. Steup (ed.), Knowledge, Truth, and Duty: Essays on Epistemic Justification, Responsibility, and Virtue. Oxford University Press.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   65 citations  
  • Do Large Probabilities Explain Better?Michael Strevens - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (3):366-390.
    It is widely held that the size of a probability makes no difference to the quality of a probabilistic explanation. I argue that explanatory practice in statistical physics belies this claim. The claim has gained currency only because of an impoverished conception of probabilistic processes and an unwarranted assumption that all probabilistic explanations have a single form.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   19 citations  
  • Why Unification is Neither Necessary nor Sufficient for Explanation.Victor Gijsbers - 2007 - Philosophy of Science 74 (4):481-500.
    In this paper, I argue that unification is neither necessary nor sufficient for explanation. Focusing on the versions of the unificationist theory of explanation of Kitcher and of Schurz and Lambert, I establish three theses. First, Kitcher’s criterion of unification is vitiated by the fact that it entails that every proposition can be explained by itself, a flaw that it is unable to overcome. Second, because neither Kitcher’s theory nor that of Schurz and Lambert can solve the problems of asymmetry (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   13 citations  
  • Reintroducing Prediction to Explanation.Heather E. Douglas - 2009 - Philosophy of Science 76 (4):444-463.
    Although prediction has been largely absent from discussions of explanation for the past 40 years, theories of explanation can gain much from a reintroduction. I review the history that divorced prediction from explanation, examine the proliferation of models of explanation that followed, and argue that accounts of explanation have been impoverished by the neglect of prediction. Instead of a revival of the symmetry thesis, I suggest that explanation should be understood as a cognitive tool that assists us in generating new (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   31 citations  
  • The Psychology of Scientific Explanation.J. D. Trout - 2007 - Philosophy Compass 2 (3):564–591.
    Philosophers agree that scientific explanations aim to produce understanding, and that good ones succeed in this aim. But few seriously consider what understanding is, or what the cues are when we have it. If it is a psychological state or process, describing its specific nature is the job of psychological theorizing. This article examines the role of understanding in scientific explanation. It warns that the seductive, phenomenological sense of understanding is often, but mistakenly, viewed as a cue of genuine understanding. (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   35 citations  
  • Linguistic Understanding and Knowledge.Guy Longworth - 2008 - Noûs 42 (1):50–79.
    Is linguistic understanding a form of knowledge? I clarify the question and then consider two natural forms a positive answer might take. I argue that, although some recent arguments fail to decide the issue, neither positive answer should be accepted. The aim is not yet to foreclose on the view that linguistic understanding is a form of knowledge, but to develop desiderata on a satisfactory successor to the two natural views rejected here.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   19 citations  
  • Probability, Explanation, and Information.Peter Railton - 1981 - Synthese 48 (2):233 - 256.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   82 citations  
  • Why Knowledge is Unnecessary for Understanding Language.Dean Pettit - 2002 - Mind 111 (443):519-550.
    It is a natural thought that understanding language consists in possessing knowledge—to understand a word is to know what it means. It is also natural to suppose that this knowledge is propositional knowledge—to know what a word means is to know that it means such-and-such. Thus it is prima facie plausible to suppose that understanding a bit of language consists in possessing propositional knowledge of its meaning. I refer to this as the epistemic view of understanding language. The theoretical appeal (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   36 citations  
  • Explanation is a Genus: An Essay on the Varieties of Scientific Explanation.Mariam Thalos - 2002 - Synthese 130 (3):317-354.
    I shall endeavor to show that every physical theory since Newton explainswithout drawing attention to causes–that, in other words, physical theories as physical theories aspire to explain under an ideal quite distinctfrom that of causal explanation. If I am right, then even if sometimes theexplanations achieved by a physical theory are not in violation ofthe standard of causal explanation, this is purely an accident. For physicaltheories, as I will show, do not, as such, aim at accommodating the goals oraspirations of (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   8 citations  
  • The Epistemic Value of Understanding.Henk W. de Regt - 2009 - Philosophy of Science 76 (5):585-597.
    This article analyzes the epistemic value of understanding and offers an account of the role of understanding in science. First, I discuss the objectivist view of the relation between explanation and understanding, defended by Carl Hempel and J. D. Trout. I challenge this view by arguing that pragmatic aspects of explanation are crucial for achieving the epistemic aims of science. Subsequently, I present an analysis of these pragmatic aspects in terms of ‘intelligibility’ and a contextual account of scientific understanding based (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   35 citations  
  • Forms of Explanation: Rethinking the Questions in Social Theory.Alan Garfinkel - 1981 - Philosophical Review 93 (1):116-118.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   143 citations  
  • Contrastive Explanations as Social Accounts.Kareem Khalifa - 2010 - Social Epistemology 24 (4):263-284.
    Explanatory contrastivists hold that we often explain phenomena of the form p rather than q. In this paper, I present a new, social‐epistemological model of contrastive explanation—accountabilism. Specifically, my view is inspired by social‐scientific research that treats explanations fundamentally as accounts; that is, communicative actions that restore one's social status when charged with questionable behaviour. After developing this model, I show how accountabilism provides a more comprehensive model of contrastive explanation than the causal models of contrastive explanation that are currently (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   4 citations  
  • Woodcutters and Witchcraft: Rationality and Interpretive Change in the Social Sciences.Mark W. Risjord - 2000 - State University of New York Press.
    Uncovers the methodological principles that govern interpretive change.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   17 citations  
  • Knowing the Answer, Understanding and Epistemic Value.Duncan Pritchard - 2008 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 77 (1):325-339.
    This paper principally argues for two controversial theses: that understanding, unlike knowledge, is distinctively valuable, and that understanding is the proper goal of inquiry.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   27 citations  
  • Explanatory Presupposition.Elliott Sober - 1986 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 64 (2):143 – 149.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   13 citations  
  • The Nature and Value of Knowledge: Three Investigations.Duncan Pritchard - 2010 - Oxford University Press.
    The value problem -- Unpacking the value problem -- The swamping problem -- fundamental and non-fundamental epistemic goods -- The relevance of epistemic value monism -- Responding to the swamping problem I : the practical response -- Responding to the swamping problem II : the monistic response -- Responding to the swamping problem III : the pluralist response -- Robust virtue epistemology -- Knowledge and achievement -- Interlude : is robust virtue epistemology a reductive theory of knowledge? -- Achievement without (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   127 citations  
  • Explaining the Brain: Mechanisms and the Mosaic Unity of Neuroscience.Carl F. Craver - 2007 - Oxford University Press, Clarendon Press.
    Carl Craver investigates what we are doing when we sue neuroscience to explain what's going on in the brain.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   366 citations  
  • Paying the Price for a Theory of Explanation: De Regt’s Discussion of Trout.J. D. Trout - 2005 - Philosophy of Science 72 (1):198-208.
    (2002). Philosophy of Science 72 (January), 198-208.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   15 citations  
  • Explanatory Unification and the Problem of Asymmetry.Eric Barnes - 1992 - Philosophy of Science 59 (4):558-571.
    Philip Kitcher has proposed a theory of explanation based on the notion of unification. Despite the genuine interest and power of the theory, I argue here that the theory suffers from a fatal deficiency: It is intrinsically unable to account for the asymmetric structure of explanation, and thus ultimately falls prey to a problem similar to the one which beset Hempel's D-N model. I conclude that Kitcher is wrong to claim that one can settle the issue of an argument's explanatory (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   26 citations  
  • Quantum Theory and Explanatory Discourse: Endgame for Understanding?James T. Cushing - 1991 - Philosophy of Science 58 (3):337-358.
    Empirical adequacy, formal explanation and understanding are distinct goals of science. While no a priori criterion for understanding should be laid down, there may be inherent limitations on the way we are able to understand explanations of physical phenomena. I examine several recent contributions to the exercise of fashioning an explanatory discourse to mold the formal explanation provided by quantum mechanics to our modes of understanding. The question is whether we are capable of truly understanding (or comprehending) quantum phenomena, as (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   24 citations  
  • A Deductive-Nomological Model of Probabilistic Explanation.Peter Railton - 1978 - Philosophy of Science 45 (2):206-226.
    It has been the dominant view that probabilistic explanations of particular facts must be inductive in character. I argue here that this view is mistaken, and that the aim of probabilistic explanation is not to demonstrate that the explanandum fact was nomically expectable, but to give an account of the chance mechanism(s) responsible for it. To this end, a deductive-nomological model of probabilistic explanation is developed and defended. Such a model has application only when the probabilities occurring in covering laws (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   85 citations  
  • Responses to Critics.Jonathan Kvanvig - 2009 - In Pritchard, Haddock & Millar (eds.), Epistemic Value. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 339-353.
    I begin by expressing my sincere thanks to my critics for taking time from their own impressive projects in epistemology to consider mine. Often, in reading their criticisms, I had the feeling of having received more help than I really wanted! But the truth of the matter is that we learn best by making mistakes, and I appreciate the conscientious attention to my work that my critics have shown.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   43 citations  
  • Is Science Value Free?: Values and Scientific Understanding.Hugh Lacey - 1999 - Routledge.
    He also focuses on discussions of 'development', especially in Third World countries. This paperback edition includes a new preface.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   69 citations  
  • The Chances of Explanation.P. Humphreys - 1992 - Princeton Up.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   36 citations  
  • From Causation to Explanation and Back.Nancy Cartwright - 2004 - In Brian Leiter (ed.), The Future for Philosophy. Clarendon Press.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   6 citations  
  • The Philosophy of Mathematical Practice.Paolo Mancosu (ed.) - 2008 - Oxford University Press.
    There is an urgent need in philosophy of mathematics for new approaches which pay closer attention to mathematical practice. This book will blaze the trail: it offers philosophical analyses of important characteristics of contemporary mathematics and of many aspects of mathematical activity which escape purely formal logical treatment.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   14 citations  
  • A Contextual Approach to Scientific Understanding.Henk Regt & Dennis Dieks - 2005 - Synthese 144 (1):137-170.
    Achieving understanding of nature is one of the aims of science. In this paper we offer an analysis of the nature of scientific understanding that accords with actual scientific practice and accommodates the historical diversity of conceptions of understanding. Its core idea is a general criterion for the intelligibility of scientific theories that is essentially contextual: which theories conform to this criterion depends on contextual factors, and can change in the course of time. Our analysis provides a general account of (...)
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   119 citations  
  • Scientific Explanation.Philip Kitcher & Wesley Salmon (eds.) - 1989 - Univ of Minnesota Pr.
    Studdert-Kennedy, Gerald, Evidence and Explanation in Social Science. ... Kauffman, Stuart, "Articulation of Parts Explanation in Biology and the Rational ...
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   102 citations  
  • Discussion Note: Making Sense of Understanding.Henk W. de Regt - 2004 - Philosophy of Science 71 (1):98-109.
    J.D. Trout (2002) presents a challenge to all theorists of scientific explanation who appeal to the notion of understanding. Trout denounces understanding as irrelevant, if not dangerous, from an epistemic perspective and he endorses a radically objectivist view of explanation instead. In this note I accept Trout's challenge. I criticize his argument and defend a non-objectivist, pragmatic conception of understanding that is epistemically relevant.
    Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   30 citations  
  • Epistemic Value.Wayne D. Riggs - 2009 - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Download  
    Translate
     
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   33 citations