Results for 'indispensability arguments'

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  1. Explanatory Indispensability Arguments in Metaethics and Philosophy of Mathematics.Debbie Roberts - 2016 - In Uri D. Leibowitz & Neil Sinclair (eds.), Explanation in Ethics and Mathematics: Debunking and Dispensability. Oxford University Press.
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  2. The Enhanced Indispensability Argument, the circularity problem, and the interpretability strategy.Jan Heylen & Lars Arthur Tump - 2019 - Synthese 198 (4):3033-3045.
    Within the context of the Quine–Putnam indispensability argument, one discussion about the status of mathematics is concerned with the ‘Enhanced Indispensability Argument’, which makes explicit in what way mathematics is supposed to be indispensable in science, namely explanatory. If there are genuine mathematical explanations of empirical phenomena, an argument for mathematical platonism could be extracted by using inference to the best explanation. The best explanation of the primeness of the life cycles of Periodical Cicadas is genuinely mathematical, according (...)
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  3.  81
    Indispensability Argument and Set Theory.Karlis Podnieks - 2008 - The Reasoner 2 (11):8--9.
    Most set theorists accept AC, and reject AD, i.e. for them, AC is true in the "world of sets", and AD is false. Applying to set theory the above-mentioned formalistic explanation of the existence of quarks, we could say: if, for a long time in the future, set theorists will continue their believing in AC, then one may think of a unique "world of sets" as existing in the same sense as quarks are believed to exist.
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  4. Optimal representations and the Enhanced Indispensability Argument.Manuel Barrantes - 2019 - Synthese 196 (1):247-263.
    The Enhanced Indispensability Argument appeals to the existence of Mathematical Explanations of Physical Phenomena to justify mathematical Platonism, following the principle of Inference to the Best Explanation. In this paper, I examine one example of a MEPP—the explanation of the 13-year and 17-year life cycle of magicicadas—and argue that this case cannot be used defend the EIA. I then generalize my analysis of the cicada case to other MEPPs, and show that these explanations rely on what I will call (...)
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  5. Autonomy Platonism and the Indispensability Argument. By Russell Marcus. Lanham, Md.: Lexington Books, 2015. Pp. xii + 247. [REVIEW]Nicholas Danne - 2017 - Metaphilosophy 48 (4):591-594.
    Comprehensive resource for indispensability research.
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  6. Quine, Putnam, and the ‘Quine–Putnam’ Indispensability Argument.David Liggins - 2008 - Erkenntnis 68 (1):113 - 127.
    Much recent discussion in the philosophy of mathematics has concerned the indispensability argument—an argument which aims to establish the existence of abstract mathematical objects through appealing to the role that mathematics plays in empirical science. The indispensability argument is standardly attributed to W. V. Quine and Hilary Putnam. In this paper, I show that this attribution is mistaken. Quine's argument for the existence of abstract mathematical objects differs from the argument which many philosophers of mathematics ascribe to him. (...)
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  7. Quine and the Incoherence of the Indispensability Argument.Michael J. Shaffer - 2019 - Logos and Episteme 10 (2):207-213.
    It is an under-appreciated fact that Quine's rejection of the analytic/synthetic distinction, when coupled with some other plausible and related views, implies that there are serious difficulties in demarcating empirical theories from pure mathematical theories within the Quinean framework. This is a serious problem because there seems to be a principled difference between the two disciplines that cannot apparently be captured in the orthodox Quienan framework. For the purpose of simplicity let us call this Quine's problem of demarcation. In this (...)
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  8. The Current Epistemic Status of the Indispensability Arguments in the Philosophy of Science.Catalin Barboianu - 2016 - Analele Universitatii Din Craiova 36 (2):108-132.
    The predisposition of the Indispensability Argument to objections, rephrasing and versions associated with the various views in philosophy of mathematics grants it a special status of a “blueprint” type rather than a debatable theme in the philosophy of science. From this point of view, it follows that the Argument has more an epistemic character than ontological.
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  9. On the ‘Indispensable Explanatory Role’ of Mathematics.Juha Saatsi - 2016 - Mind 125 (500):1045-1070.
    The literature on the indispensability argument for mathematical realism often refers to the ‘indispensable explanatory role’ of mathematics. I argue that we should examine the notion of explanatory indispensability from the point of view of specific conceptions of scientific explanation. The reason is that explanatory indispensability in and of itself turns out to be insufficient for justifying the ontological conclusions at stake. To show this I introduce a distinction between different kinds of explanatory roles—some ‘thick’ and ontologically (...)
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  10. Explanatory Indispensability and Deliberative Indispensability: Against Enoch's Analogy.Alex Worsnip - 2016 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 5 (4):226-235.
    In this note, I discuss David Enoch's influential deliberative indispensability argument for metanormative realism, and contend that the argument fails. In doing so, I uncover an important disanalogy between explanatory indispensability arguments and deliberative indispensability arguments, one that explains how we could accept the former without accepting the latter.
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  11. Indispensability Without Platonism.Anne Newstead & James Franklin - 2012 - In Alexander Bird, Brian Ellis & Howard Sankey (eds.), Properties, Powers, and Structures: Issues in the Metaphysics of Realism. New York, USA: Routledge. pp. 81-97.
    According to Quine’s indispensability argument, we ought to believe in just those mathematical entities that we quantify over in our best scientific theories. Quine’s criterion of ontological commitment is part of the standard indispensability argument. However, we suggest that a new indispensability argument can be run using Armstrong’s criterion of ontological commitment rather than Quine’s. According to Armstrong’s criterion, ‘to be is to be a truthmaker (or part of one)’. We supplement this criterion with our own brand (...)
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  12. Indispensability, the Discursive Dilemma, and Groups with Minds of Their Own.Abraham Sesshu Roth - 2014 - In Sara Rachel Chant, Frank Hindriks & Gerhard Preyer (eds.), From Individual to Collective Intentionality. Oxford University Press. pp. 137-162.
    There is a way of talking that would appear to involve ascriptions of purpose, goal directed activity, and intentional states to groups. Cases are familiar enough: classmates intend to vacation in Switzerland, the department is searching for a metaphysician, the Democrats want to minimize losses in the upcoming elections, and the US intends to improve relations with such and such country. But is this talk to be understood just in terms of the attitudes and actions of the individuals involved? Is (...)
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  13. Representational indispensability and ontological commitment.John Heron - 2020 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 9 (2):105-114.
    Recent debates about mathematical ontology are guided by the view that Platonism's prospects depend on mathematics' explanatory role in science. If mathematics plays an explanatory role, and in the right kind of way, this carries ontological commitment to mathematical objects. Conversely, the assumption goes, if mathematics merely plays a representational role then our world-oriented uses of mathematics fail to commit us to mathematical objects. I argue that it is a mistake to think that mathematical representation is necessarily ontologically innocent and (...)
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  14. Dynamical Systems Theory and Explanatory Indispensability.Juha Saatsi - 2017 - Philosophy of Science 84 (5):892-904.
    I examine explanations’ realist commitments in relation to dynamical systems theory. First I rebut an ‘explanatory indispensability argument’ for mathematical realism from the explanatory power of phase spaces (Lyon and Colyvan 2007). Then I critically consider a possible way of strengthening the indispensability argument by reference to attractors in dynamical systems theory. The take-home message is that understanding of the modal character of explanations (in dynamical systems theory) can undermine platonist arguments from explanatory indispensability.
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  15. What is Hacking’s argument for entity realism?Boaz Miller - 2016 - Synthese 193 (3):991-1006.
    According to Ian Hacking’s Entity Realism, unobservable entities that scientists carefully manipulate to study other phenomena are real. Although Hacking presents his case in an intuitive, attractive, and persuasive way, his argument remains elusive. I present five possible readings of Hacking’s argument: a no-miracle argument, an indispensability argument, a transcendental argument, a Vichian argument, and a non-argument. I elucidate Hacking’s argument according to each reading, and review their strengths, their weaknesses, and their compatibility with each other.
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  16. On the Indispensability of (Im)Possibilia.Martin Vacek - 2013 - Humana Mente 6 (25).
    According to modal realism formulated by David Lewis, there exist concrete possible worlds. As he argues the hypothesis is serviceable and that is a sufficient reason to think it is true. On the other side, Lewis does not consider the pragmatic reasons to be conclusive. He admits that the theoretical benefits of modal realism can be illusory or that the acceptance of controversial ontology for the sake of theoretical benefits might be misguided in the first place. In the first part (...)
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  17.  51
    Mathematical Pluralism and Indispensability.Silvia Jonas - forthcoming - Erkenntnis.
    Pluralist mathematical realism, the view that there exists more than one mathematical universe, has become an influential position in the philosophy of mathematics. I argue that, if mathematical pluralism is true (and we have good reason to believe that it is), then mathematical realism cannot (easily) be justified by arguments from the indispensability of mathematics to science. This is because any justificatory chain of inferences from mathematical applications in science to the total body of mathematical theorems can cover (...)
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  18. Eudaimonistic Argumentation.Andrew Aberdein - 2020 - In Bart Garssen & Frans van Eemeren (eds.), From Argument Schemes to Argumentative Relations in the Wild: A Variety of Contributions to Argumentation Theory. Cham: Springer Verlag. pp. 97–106.
    Virtue theories have lately enjoyed a modest vogue in the study of argumentation, echoing the success of more far-reaching programmes in ethics and epistemology. Virtue theories of argumentation (VTA) comprise several conceptually distinct projects, including the provision of normative foundations for argument evaluation and a renewed focus on the character of good arguers. Perhaps the boldest of these is the pursuit of the fully satisfying argument, the argument that contributes to human flourishing. This project has an independently developed epistemic analogue: (...)
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  19. The Explanatory Indispensability of Memory Traces.Felipe De Brigard - 2020 - The Harvard Review of Philosophy 27:23-47.
    During the first half of the twentieth century, many philosophers of memory opposed the postulation of memory traces based on the claim that a satisfactory account of remembering need not include references to causal processes involved in recollection. However, in 1966, an influential paper by Martin and Deutscher showed that causal claims are indeed necessary for a proper account of remembering. This, however, did not settle the issue, as in 1977 Malcolm argued that even if one were to buy Martin (...)
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  20. Epistemic Projects, Indispensability, and the Structure of Modal Thought.Felipe Morales Carbonell - 2020 - Res Philosophica 97 (4):611-638.
    I argue that modal epistemology should pay more attention to questions about the structure and function of modal thought. We can treat these questions from synchronic and diachronic angles. From a synchronic perspective, I consider whether a general argument for the epistemic support of modal though can be made on the basis of modal thoughs’s indispensability for what Enoch and Schechter (2008) call rationally required epistemic projects. After formulating the argument, I defend it from various objections. I also examine (...)
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  21. Debunking Arguments: Mathematics, Logic, and Modal Security.Justin Clarke-Doane - forthcoming - In Robert Richards and Michael Ruse (ed.), The Cambridge Handbook of Evolutionary Ethics. Cambridge University Press.
    I discuss the structure of genealogical debunking arguments. I argue that they undermine our mathematical beliefs if they undermine our moral beliefs. The contrary appearance stems from a confusion of arithmetic truths with (first-order) logical truths, or from a confusion of reliability with justification. I conclude with a discussion of the cogency of debunking arguments, in light of the above. Their cogency depends on whether information can undermine all of our beliefs of a kind, F, without giving us (...)
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  22. Persistent burglars and knocks on doors: Causal indispensability of knowing vindicated.Artūrs Logins - 2022 - European Journal of Philosophy 30 (4):1335-1357.
    The aim of the present article is to accomplish two things. The first is to show that given some further plausible assumptions, existing challenges to the indispensability of knowledge in causal explanation of action fail. The second is to elaborate an overlooked and distinct argument in favor of the causal efficacy of knowledge. In short, even if knowledge were dispensable in causal explanation of action, it is still indispensable in causal explanation of other mental attitudes and, in particular, some (...)
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  23. Performative transcendental arguments.Adrian Bardon - 2005 - Philosophia 33 (1-4):69-95.
    ‘Performative’ transcendental arguments exploit the status of a subcategory of self-falsifying propositions in showing that some form of skepticism is unsustainable. The aim of this paper is to examine the relationship between performatively inconsistent propositions and transcendental arguments, and then to compare performative transcendental arguments to modest transcendental arguments that seek only to establish the indispensability of some belief or conceptual framework. Reconceptualizing transcendental arguments as performative helps focus the intended dilemma for the skeptic: (...)
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  24. Grounding and the argument from explanatoriness.David Mark Kovacs - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (12):2927-2952.
    In recent years, metaphysics has undergone what some describe as a revolution: it has become standard to understand a vast array of questions as questions about grounding, a metaphysical notion of determination. Why should we believe in grounding, though? Supporters of the revolution often gesture at what I call the Argument from Explanatoriness: the notion of grounding is somehow indispensable to a metaphysical type of explanation. I challenge this argument and along the way develop a “reactionary” view, according to which (...)
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  25. Sovereignty vs Globalization: Indispensable Discourse due to Relationship.Harry Cephas Charsmar - 2020 - International Journal of Political Theory 4 (1):130-150.
    Over the decades, scholarly discourses on sovereignty and globalization have been produced following various theories and numerous debates about the strength and weakness of the sovereign nation-state and globalization. In this paper, the various theories on the discourse of sovereignty and globalization are traced and placed into four categories as: contending paradigm, globalization paradigm, transformation paradigm and complementary paradigm. Both concepts, sovereignty and globalization, are explored by adopting the methodological framework, sources of explanation. The argument is that there is an (...)
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  26. How to define levels of explanation and evaluate their indispensability.Christopher Clarke - 2017 - Synthese 194 (6).
    Some explanations in social science, psychology and biology belong to a higher level than other explanations. And higher explanations possess the virtue of abstracting away from the details of lower explanations, many philosophers argue. As a result, these higher explanations are irreplaceable. And this suggests that there are genuine higher laws or patterns involving social, psychological and biological states. I show that this ‘abstractness argument’ is really an argument schema, not a single argument. This is because the argument uses the (...)
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  27. Idealistic Ontological Arguments in Royce, Collingwood, and Others.Kevin J. Harrelson - 2012 - Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society 48 (4):411.
    This essay examines how, in the early twentieth century, ontological arguments were employed in the defense of metaphysical idealism. The idealists of the period tended to grant that ontological arguments defy our usual expectations in logic, and so they were less concerned with the formal properties of Anselmian arguments. They insisted, however, that ontological arguments are indispensable, and they argued that we can trust argumentation as such only if we presume that there is a valid ontological (...)
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  28.  60
    A Quinean Reformulation of Fregean Arguments.Nathaniel Gan - forthcoming - Acta Analytica:1-14.
    In ontological debates, realists typically argue for their view via one of two approaches. The _Quinean approach_ employs naturalistic arguments that say our scientific practices give us reason to affirm the existence of a kind of entity. The _Fregean approach_ employs linguistic arguments that say we should affirm the existence of a kind of entity because our discourse contains reference to those entities. These two approaches are often seen as distinct, with _indispensability arguments_ typically associated with the former, (...)
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  29. The Instrumental Value Arguments for National Self-Determination.Hsin-wen Lee - 2019 - Dialogue—Canadian Philosophical Review 58 (1):65-89.
    David Miller argues that national identity is indispensable for the successful functioning of a liberal democracy. National identity makes important contributions to liberal democratic institutions, including creating incentives for the fulfilment of civic duties, facilitating deliberative democracy, and consolidating representative democracy. Thus, a shared identity is indispensable for liberal democracy and grounds a good claim for self-determination. Because Miller’s arguments appeal to the instrumental values of a national culture, I call his argument ‘instrumental value’ arguments. In this paper, (...)
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  30. Concerning publicized goods (or, the promiscuity of the public goods argument).Vaughn Bryan Baltzly - 2021 - Economics and Philosophy 37 (3):376-394.
    Proponents of the public goods argument ('PGA') seek to ground the authority of the state on its putative indispensability as a means of providing public goods. But many of the things we take to be public goods – including many of the goods commonly invoked in support of the PGA – are actually what we might term publicized goods. A publicized good is any whose ‘public’ character results only from a policy decision to make some good freely and universally (...)
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  31. Numbers without Science.Russell Marcus - 2007 - Dissertation, The Graduate School and University Center of the City University of New York
    Numbers without Science opposes the Quine-Putnam indispensability argument, seeking to undermine the argument and reduce its profound influence. Philosophers rely on indispensability to justify mathematical knowledge using only empiricist epistemology. I argue that we need an independent account of our knowledge of mathematics. The indispensability argument, in broad form, consists of two premises. The major premise alleges that we are committed to mathematical objects if science requires them. The minor premise alleges that science in fact requires mathematical (...)
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  32. Pythagorean powers or a challenge to platonism.Colin Cheyne & Charles R. Pigden - 1996 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 74 (4):639 – 645.
    The Quine/Putnam indispensability argument is regarded by many as the chief argument for the existence of platonic objects. We argue that this argument cannot establish what its proponents intend. The form of our argument is simple. Suppose indispensability to science is the only good reason for believing in the existence of platonic objects. Either the dispensability of mathematical objects to science can be demonstrated and, hence, there is no good reason for believing in the existence of platonic objects, (...)
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  33. The naturalistic case for free will.Christian List - forthcoming - In Stavros Ioannidis, Gal Vishne, Meir Hemmo & Orly Shenker (eds.), Levels of Reality in Science and Philosophy. Cham: Springer.
    The aim of this expository paper is to give an informal overview of a plausible naturalistic case for free will. I will describe what I take to be the main naturalistically motivated challenges for free will and respond to them by presenting an indispensability argument for free will. The argument supports the reality of free will as an emergent higher-level phenomenon. I will also explain why the resulting picture of free will does not conflict with the possibility that the (...)
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  34. Platonic Relations and Mathematical Explanations.Robert Knowles - 2021 - Philosophical Quarterly 71 (3):623-644.
    Some scientific explanations appear to turn on pure mathematical claims. The enhanced indispensability argument appeals to these ‘mathematical explanations’ in support of mathematical platonism. I argue that the success of this argument rests on the claim that mathematical explanations locate pure mathematical facts on which their physical explananda depend, and that any account of mathematical explanation that supports this claim fails to provide an adequate understanding of mathematical explanation.
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  35. The Applicability of Mathematics to Physical Modality.Nora Berenstain - 2017 - Synthese 194 (9):3361-3377.
    This paper argues that scientific realism commits us to a metaphysical determination relation between the mathematical entities that are indispensible to scientific explanation and the modal structure of the empirical phenomena those entities explain. The argument presupposes that scientific realism commits us to the indispensability argument. The viewpresented here is that the indispensability of mathematics commits us not only to the existence of mathematical structures and entities but to a metaphysical determination relation between those entities and the modal (...)
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  36. Against Mathematical Convenientism.Seungbae Park - 2016 - Axiomathes 26 (2):115-122.
    Indispensablists argue that when our belief system conflicts with our experiences, we can negate a mathematical belief but we do not because if we do, we would have to make an excessive revision of our belief system. Thus, we retain a mathematical belief not because we have good evidence for it but because it is convenient to do so. I call this view ‘ mathematical convenientism.’ I argue that mathematical convenientism commits the consequential fallacy and that it demolishes the Quine-Putnam (...)
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  37. Clarificando o Suporte do Argumento Melhorado da Indispensabilidade Matemática.Eduardo Castro - 2017 - Argumentos 17 (9):57-71.
    The enhanced mathematical indispensability argument, proposed by Alan Baker (2005), argues that we must commit to mathematical entities, because mathematical entities play an indispensable explanatory role in our best scientific theories. This article clarifies the doctrines that support this argument, namely, the doctrines of naturalism and confirmational holism.
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  38. Mathematics and Explanatory Generality: Nothing but Cognitive Salience.Juha Saatsi & Robert Knowles - 2021 - Erkenntnis 86 (5):1119-1137.
    We demonstrate how real progress can be made in the debate surrounding the enhanced indispensability argument. Drawing on a counterfactual theory of explanation, well-motivated independently of the debate, we provide a novel analysis of ‘explanatory generality’ and how mathematics is involved in its procurement. On our analysis, mathematics’ sole explanatory contribution to the procurement of explanatory generality is to make counterfactual information about physical dependencies easier to grasp and reason with for creatures like us. This gives precise content to (...)
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  39. What Can Our Best Scientific Theories Tell Us About The Modal Status of Mathematical Objects?Joe Morrison - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-18.
    Indispensability arguments are used as a way of working out what there is: our best science tells us what things there are. Some philosophers think that indispensability arguments can be used to show that we should be committed to the existence of mathematical objects. Do indispensability arguments also deliver conclusions about the modal properties of these mathematical entities? Colyvan Mathematical knowledge, OUP, Oxford, 109-122, 2007) and Hartry Field each suggest that a consequence of the (...)
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  40. Otávio Bueno* and Steven French.**Applying Mathematics: Immersion, Inference, Interpretation. [REVIEW]Anthony F. Peressini - 2020 - Philosophia Mathematica 28 (1):116-127.
    Otávio Bueno* * and Steven French.** ** Applying Mathematics: Immersion, Inference, Interpretation. Oxford University Press, 2018. ISBN: 978-0-19-881504-4 978-0-19-185286-2. doi:10.1093/oso/9780198815044. 001.0001. Pp. xvii + 257.
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  41. Rejecting Mathematical Realism while Accepting Interactive Realism.Seungbae Park - 2018 - Analysis and Metaphysics 17:7-21.
    Indispensablists contend that accepting scientific realism while rejecting mathematical realism involves a double standard. I refute this contention by developing an enhanced version of scientific realism, which I call interactive realism. It holds that interactively successful theories are typically approximately true, and that the interactive unobservable entities posited by them are likely to exist. It is immune to the pessimistic induction while mathematical realism is susceptible to it.
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  42. Why inference to the best explanation doesn’t secure empirical grounds for mathematical platonism.Kenneth Boyce - 2018 - Synthese 198 (1):1-13.
    Proponents of the explanatory indispensability argument for mathematical platonism maintain that claims about mathematical entities play an essential explanatory role in some of our best scientific explanations. They infer that the existence of mathematical entities is supported by way of inference to the best explanation from empirical phenomena and therefore that there are the same sort of empirical grounds for believing in mathematical entities as there are for believing in concrete unobservables such as quarks. I object that this inference (...)
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  43. Mathematical application and the no confirmation thesis.Kenneth Boyce - 2020 - Analysis 80 (1):11-20.
    Some proponents of the indispensability argument for mathematical realism maintain that the empirical evidence that confirms our best scientific theories and explanations also confirms their pure mathematical components. I show that the falsity of this view follows from three highly plausible theses, two of which concern the nature of mathematical application and the other the nature of empirical confirmation. The first is that the background mathematical theories suitable for use in science are conservative in the sense outlined by Hartry (...)
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  44. What is Field's Epistemological Objection to Platonism?Ylwa Sjölin Wirling - 2019 - In Robin Stenwall & Tobias Hansson Wahlberg (eds.), Maurinian Truths : Essays in Honour of Anna-Sofia Maurin on her 50th Birthday. pp. 123-133.
    This paper concerns an epistemological objection against mathematical platonism, due to Hartry Field.The argument poses an explanatory challenge – the challenge to explain the reliability of our mathematical beliefs – which the platonist, it’s argued, cannot meet. Is the objection compelling? Philosophers disagree, but they also disagree on (and are sometimes very unclear about) how the objection should be understood. Here I distinguish some options, and highlight some gaps that need to be filled in on the potentially most compelling version (...)
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  45.  10
    Scorekeeping in Debates between Non-Naturalism and Its Opponents: On Parfit's Last Statement in Metaethics.Dong-Ryul Choo - 2020 - 철학적 분석 (Philosophical Analysis) 44:1-29.
    [English abstract] In his last metaethical statement, Parfit revisits his earlier arguments for non-metaphysical normative non-naturalism , and points to the possibility of convergence between his view and Railton's non-analytical normative naturalism. I examine the basis of this convergence claim and find it unpersuasive, mainly because if their views converge on the same position, Parfit's non-natural norms exist only as predicates. In order to avoid this consequence, he needs to present a reason for believing in the existence of normative (...)
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  46. Evidential holism.Joe Morrison - 2017 - Philosophy Compass 12 (6):e12417.
    Evidential holism begins with something like the claim that “it is only jointly as a theory that scientific statements imply their observable consequences.” This is the holistic claim that Elliott Sober tells us is an “unexceptional observation”. But variations on this “unexceptional” claim feature as a premise in a series of controversial arguments for radical conclusions, such as that there is no analytic or synthetic distinction that the meaning of a sentence cannot be understood without understanding the whole language (...)
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  47. Inference to the best explanation and mathematical realism.Sorin Ioan Bangu - 2008 - Synthese 160 (1):13-20.
    Arguing for mathematical realism on the basis of Field’s explanationist version of the Quine–Putnam Indispensability argument, Alan Baker has recently claimed to have found an instance of a genuine mathematical explanation of a physical phenomenon. While I agree that Baker presents a very interesting example in which mathematics plays an essential explanatory role, I show that this example, and the argument built upon it, begs the question against the mathematical nominalist.
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  48. A Deflationist Error Theory of Properties.Arvid Båve - 2015 - Dialectica 69 (1):23-59.
    I here defend a theory consisting of four claims about ‘property’ and properties, and argue that they form a coherent whole that can solve various serious problems. The claims are (1): ‘property’ is defined by the principles (PR): ‘F-ness/Being F/etc. is a property of x iff F’ and (PA): ‘F-ness/Being F/etc. is a property’; (2) the function of ‘property’ is to increase the expressive power of English, roughly by mimicking quantification into predicate position; (3) property talk should be understood at (...)
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  49. Pathological Pretending.Jody Azzouni - 2018 - Analysis 78 (4):692-703.
    Bradley Armour-Garb and James A. Woodbridge, in Pretense and Pathology, make an ambitious and far-ranging case that philosophical fictionalism (particularly the pretence variety that they favour) illuminates several long-standing philosophical puzzles posed by words in ordinary language, such as ‘exist’, ‘true’ and ‘means that’, as well as the more technical, ‘refers to’, ‘proposition’ and ‘satisfies’. Along the way, Armour-Garb and Woodbridge discuss topics in the philosophy of language, philosophical logic, ontology, epistemology and more. An important aspect of their project is (...)
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  50. Realistic Claims in Logical Empiricism.Matthias Neuber - forthcoming - In Uskali Mäki, Stéphanie Ruphy, Gerhard Schurz & Ioannis Votsis (eds.), Recent Developments in the Philosophy of Science: EPSA13 Helsinki. Springer.
    Logical empiricism is commonly seen as a counter-position to scientific realism. In the present paper it is shown that there indeed existed a realist faction within the logical empiricist movement. In particular, I shall point out that at least four types of realistic arguments can be distinguished within this faction: Reichenbach’s ‘probabilistic argument,’ Feigl’s ‘pragmatic argument,’ Hempel’s ‘indispensability argument,’ and Kaila’s ‘invariantist argument.’ All these variations of arguments are intended to prevent the logical empiricist agenda from the (...)
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