Stephen Mumford Nottingham University, Nottingham University
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  • Faculty, Nottingham University
  • Faculty, Nottingham University
  • PhD, University of Leeds, 1994.

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  1. Rani Lill Anjum, Svein Anders Noer Lie & Stephen Mumford, Dispositions and Ethics.
    What is the connection between dispositions and ethics? Some might think very little and those who are interested in dispositions tend to be metaphysicians whose interests are far from value. However, we argue in this paper that dispositions and dispositionality are central to ethics, indeed a precondition. Ethics rests on a number of notions that are either dispositional in nature or involve real dispositions or powers at work. We argue for a dispositional account of value that offers an alternative to (...)
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  2. Rani Lill Anjum, Johan Arnt Myrstad & Stephen Mumford, Conditional Probability From an Ontological Point of View.
    This paper argues that the technical notion of conditional probability, as given by the ratio analysis, is unsuitable for dealing with our pretheoretical and intuitive understanding of both conditionality and probability. This is an ontological account of conditionals that include an irreducible dispositional connection between the antecedent and consequent conditions and where the conditional has to be treated as an indivisible whole rather than compositional. The relevant type of conditionality is found in some well-defined group of conditional statements. As an (...)
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  3. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum, Freedom and Control - On the Modality of Free Will.
  4.  21
    Sebastián Briceño & Stephen Mumford (2016). Relations All the Way Down? Against Ontic Structural Realism. In Anna Marmodoro & David Yates (eds.), The Metaphysics of Relations. Oxford University Press 198-217.
    According to Ladyman, the world consists of nothing more than relations that relate to no particulars. Could the world be nothing but structure? In this chapter it is argued that even though there are a number of problems with the standard view of relations accompanied by a particularist ontology, substituting for it a world of pure structure is not progress. A world of pure structure would be no more than a Platonic entity, lacking any resources for concretization. Consequently, there would (...)
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  5.  19
    Stephen Mumford (2016). Armstrong on Dispositions and Laws of Nature. In Francesco Federico Calemi (ed.), Metaphysics and Scientific Realism: Essays in Honour of David Malet Armstrong. De Gruyter 161-176.
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  6. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2015). Powers, Non‐Consent and Freedom. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (1):136-152.
    There are a number of dispositionalist solutions to the free will problem based on freedom consisting in the agent's exercise of a power. But if a subject a is free when they exercise their power P, there is an objection to be overcome from the possibility of power implantation. A brainwasher, rather than directly manipulating a subject's movements, can instead implant in them a desire, to be understood as a disposition to act, and allow the subject to exercise such a (...)
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  7.  12
    Roger Kerry, Thor E. Eriksen, Svein A. Noer Lie, Stephen Mumford & Rani L. Anjum (2014). Causation in Evidence-Based Medicine: In Reply to Strand and Parkkinen. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice 20 (6):985-987.
  8. Stephen Mumford (2014). David Armstrong. Routledge.
    David Armstrong is one of Australia's greatest philosophers. His chief philosophical achievement has been the development of a core metaphysical programme, embracing the topics of universals, laws, modality and facts: a naturalistic metaphysics, consistent with a scientific view of the natural world. It is primarily through his owrk that Australian philosophy, and Australian metaphysics in particular, enjoys such a high reputation in the rest of the world. In this book Stephen Mumford offers an introduction to the full range of Armstrong's (...)
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  9.  16
    Stephen Mumford (2014). In Praise of Teamwork. Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 42 (1):51-56.
    One often chooses to work collaboratively. Given that there is a cost in effort of doing so, it suggests that there also has to be some real advantage in teamwork. The idea that the whole can be greater than the sum of the parts is applied to teams in terms of the non-linear composition of causes. One can thus do things together that one could not do alone or one can do them better. This supports Gaffney’s communitarian approach thereby explaining (...)
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  10. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2014). Getting Causes From Powers. Oxford University Press Uk.
    Causation is everywhere in the world: it features in every science and technology. But how much do we truly understand it? Do we know what it means to say that one thing is a cause of another and do we understand what in the world drives causation? Getting Causes from Powers develops a new and original theory of causation based on an ontology of real powers or dispositions. Others have already suggested that this ought to be possible, but no one (...)
     
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  11.  22
    Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2014). The Tendential Theory of Sporting Prowess. Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 41 (3):399-412.
    The results of sport would not interest us if either they were necessitated or they were a matter of pure chance. And if either case were true, the playing of sport would seem to make no sense either. This poses a dilemma. But there is something between these two options, namely the dispositional modality. Sporting prowess can be understood as a disposition towards victory and sporting liabilities a disposition towards defeat. The sporting contest then pits these net prowesses against each (...)
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  12. Rani Lill Anjum & Stephen Mumford (2013). With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility - On Causation and Responsibility in Spider-Man, and Possibly Moore. Critical Essays on "Causation and Responsibility".
  13.  45
    Thor Eriksen, Roger Kerry, Stephen Mumford, Svein Anders Lie & Rani Lill Anjum (2013). At the Borders of Medical Reasoning: Aetiological and Ontological Challenges of Medically Unexplained Symptoms. Philosophy, Ethics, and Humanities in Medicine 8 (1):11.
    Medically unexplained symptoms (MUS) remain recalcitrant to the medical profession, proving less suitable for homogenic treatment with respect to their aetiology, taxonomy and diagnosis. While the majority of existing medical research methods are designed for large scale population data and sufficiently homogenous groups, MUS are characterised by their heterogenic and complex nature. As a result, MUS seem to resist medical scrutiny in a way that other conditions do not. This paper approaches the problem of MUS from a philosophical point of (...)
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  14. Jennifer McKitrick, Anna Marmodoro, Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2013). Causes as Powers. [REVIEW] Metascience 22 (3):545-559.
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  15.  15
    Stephen Mumford (2013). A Pornographic Way of Seeing. In Hans Maes (ed.), Pornographic Art and the Aesthetics of Pornography. Palgrave Macmillan 58.
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  16. Stephen Mumford (2013). Max Kistler: Causation and Laws of Nature. [REVIEW] British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 64 (1):223-227.
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  17. Stephen Mumford (2013). Max Kistler Causation and Laws of Nature: Routledge Studies in Contemporary Philosophy. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 64 (1):223-227.
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  18.  44
    Stephen Mumford (2013). Why Cheat? The Philosophers' Magazine 61 (61):19-21.
  19.  14
    Stephen Mumford (2013). Ways of Watching Sport. Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 73:3-15.
    There are many ways that we can watch sport but not all of them are philosophically interesting. One can watch it enthusiastically, casually, fanatically or drunkenly. One might watch only because one has bet on the outcome. Some watch a friend or relative compete and have a narrow focus on one individual's performance. A coach or scout on the lookout for new talent may have completely different interests to a supporter of a team. But what of the ways of watching (...)
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  20.  62
    Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2013). A New Argument Against Compatibilism. Analysis (1):ant095.
    If one’s solution to the free will problem is in terms of real causal powers of agents then one ought to be an incompatibilist. Some premises are contentious but the following new argument for incompatibilism is advanced: 1. If causal determinism is true, all events are necessitated2. If all events are necessitated, then there are no powers3. Free will consists in the exercise of an agent’s powersTherefore, if causal determinism is true, there is no free will; which is to say (...)
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  21. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2013). Causation: A Very Short Introduction. OUP Oxford.
    Without cause and effect, there would be no science or technology, no moral responsibility, and no system of law. Causation is therefore the most fundamental connection in the universe and a core topic of philosophical thought. This Very Short Introduction introduces all of the main theories of causation and its key debates.
     
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  22.  41
    Stephen Mumford & Matthew Tugby (eds.) (2013). Metaphysics and Science. Oxford University Press.
    Metaphysics and Science brings together important new work within an emerging philosophical discipline: the metaphysics of science. In the opening chapter, a definition of the metaphysics of science is offered, one which explains why the topics of laws, causation, natural kinds, and emergence are at the discipline's heart. The book is then divided into four sections, which group together papers from leading academics on each of those four topics. Among the questions discussed are: How are laws and measurement methods related? (...)
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  23.  42
    Roger Kerry, Thor Eirik Eriksen, Svein Anders Noer Lie, Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2012). Causation and Evidence-Based Practive - an Ontological Review. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice 18 (5):1006-1012.
    We claim that if a complete philosophy of evidence-based practice is intended, then attention to the nature of causation in health science is necessary. We identify how health science currently conceptualises causation by the way it prioritises some research methods over others. We then show how the current understanding of what causation is serves to constrain scientific progress. An alternative account of causation is offered. This is one of dispositionalism. We claim that by understanding causation from a dispositionalist stance, many (...)
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  24.  20
    Stephen Mumford (2012). Allegiance and Identity. Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 31 (2):184-195.
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  25.  2
    Stephen Mumford (2012). Emotions and Aesthetics: An Inevitable Trade-Off? Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 39 (2):267-279.
    Sport is a producer of both emotional and aesthetic experiences. But how do these relate? Does a spectator?s emotional engagement in sport enhance or hinder it as an aesthetic experience? And does the aesthetic perception of sport enhance or hinder the emotional experiences? These questions will be addressed with particular reference to the distinction that can be drawn between partisan and purist watchers of sport, and making use of thinking in contemporary aesthetics and philosophy of emotion. There are some reasons (...)
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  26.  37
    Stephen Mumford (2012). Forum: What's the Point of Sport? The Philosophers' Magazine 58:71-76.
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  27.  12
    Stephen Mumford (2012). Forum: What’s the Point of Sport?: Sport: Profound or a Complete Waste of Time? The Philosophers' Magazine 58:71-76.
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  28.  18
    Stephen Mumford (2012). Metaphysics: A Very Short Introduction. OUP Oxford.
    In this easy-to-understand introduction, Stephen Mumford explores one of the four main branches of philosophy: metaphysics. Using practical examples to explore the main issues, he presents the ideas in a clear and simple way, helping to clarify and unravel the basic questions of this complex and abstract concept.
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  29.  32
    Stephen Mumford (2012). Moderate Partisanship as Oscillation. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 6 (3):369-375.
    In Watching Sport, Stephen Mumford distinguishes two ways in which sport can be seen. A purist sees it aesthetically while a partisan sees it competitively. But this overlooks the obvious point that most sports fans are neither entirely purist nor entirely partisan. The norm will be some moderate position in between with the purist and partisan as ideal limits. What is then the point of considering these pure aesthetic and pure competitive ways of seeing? In this discussion note, I consider (...)
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  30. Stephen Mumford (2012). Sport: Profound or a Complete Waste of Time? The Philosophers' Magazine 58:72-76.
     
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  31. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2012). Causal Dispositionalism. In Alexander Bird, Brian Ellis & Howard Sankey (eds.), Properties, Powers and Structure. Routledge
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  32. Rani Lill Anjum & Stephen Mumford (2011). What We Tend to Mean. Norsk Filosofisk Tidsskrift 1 (46):20-33.
    In this paper a dispositional account of meaning is offered. Words might dispose towards a particular or ‘literal’ meaning, but whether this meaning is actually conveyed when expressed will depend on a number of factors, such as speaker’s intentions, the context of the utterance and the background knowledge of the hearer. It is thus argued that no meaning is guaranteed or necessitated by the words used.
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  33. Stephen Mumford (2011). Watching Sport: Aesthetics, Ethics and Emotion for the Spectator. Routledge.
  34. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2011). Dispositional Modality. In C. F. Gethmann (ed.), Lebenswelt und Wissenschaft, Deutsches Jahrbuch Philosophie 2. Meiner Verlag
    There has been much discussion of powers or real dispositions in the past decade, but there remains an issue that has been inadequately treated. This concerns the precise modal value that comes with dispositionality. We contend in this paper that dispositionality involves a non-alethic, sui generis, irreducible modality. Dispositions only tend towards their manifestations; they do not necessitate them. Tendency is, of course, a dispositional term itself, so this last statement offers little by way of illumination. But given our thesis (...)
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  35.  61
    Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2011). Getting Causes From Powers. OUP Oxford.
    Causation is everywhere in the world: it features in every science and technology. But how much do we understand it? Mumford and Anjum develop a new theory of causation based on an ontology of real powers or dispositions. They provide the first detailed outline of a thoroughly dispositional approach, and explore its surprising features.
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  36. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2011). Spoils to the Vector - How to Model Causes If You Are a Realist About Powers. The Monist 94 (1):54-80.
    A standard way of representing causation is with neuron diagrams. This has become popular since the influential work of David Lewis. But it should not be assumed that such representations are metaphysically neutral and amenable to any theory of causation. On the contrary, this way of representing causation already makes several Humean assumptions about what causation is, and which suit Lewis’s programme of Humean Supervenience. An alternative of a vector diagram is better suited for a powers ontology. Causation should be (...)
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  37.  32
    Stephen Mumford (2010). Breaking It or Faking It? Some Critical Thoughts on the Voluntary Suspension of Play and Six Proposed Revisions. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 4 (3):254-268.
    The voluntary suspension of play is a putative fair play norm that has emerged in the last 20 years in association football, though there is no reason in principle why it is limited to that sport. It occurs in football when an injury appears to have been sustained and another player deliberately puts the ball out of play so that the injury can receive rapid attention. It is widely understood as a positive development within the sport and philosophers have added (...)
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  38.  56
    Stephen Mumford (2010). No Power in Unger's World. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 80 (2):476-483.
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  39. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2010). A Powerful Theory of Causation. In Anna Marmodoro (ed.), The Metaphysics of Powers: Their Grounding and Their Manifestations. Routledge 143--159.
    Hume thought that if you believed in powers, you believed in necessary connections in nature. He was then able to argue that there were none such because anything could follow anything else. But Hume wrong-footed his opponents. A power does not necessitate its manifestations: rather, it disposes towards them in a way that is less than necessary but more than purely contingent. -/- In this paper a dispositional theory of causation is offered. Causes dispose towards their effects and often produce (...)
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  40.  23
    Stephen Mumford & Teresa Lacerda (2010). The Genius in Art and in Sport: A Contribution to the Investigation of Aesthetics of Sport. Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 37 (2):182-193.
    This paper contains a consideration of the notion of genius and its significance to the discussion of the aesthetics of sport. We argue that genius can make a positive aes- thetic contribution in both art and sport, just as some have argued that the moral content of a work of art can affect its aesthetic value. A genius is an exceptional inno- vator of successful strategies, where such originality adds aesthetic value. We argue that an original painting can have greater (...)
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  41. Stephen Mumford (2009). Causal Powers and Capacities. In Helen Beebee, Christopher Hitchcock & Peter Menzies (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Causation. OUP Oxford
     
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  42. Stephen Mumford (2009). Laws and Dispositions. In Robin Le Poidevin (ed.), The Routledge Companion to Metaphysics. Routledge
     
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  43.  79
    Stephen Mumford (2009). Passing Powers Around. The Monist 92 (1):94-111.
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  44. Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2009). Double Prevention and Powers. Journal of Critical Realism 8 (3):277-293.
    Does A cause B simply if A prevents what would have prevented B? Such a case is known as double prevention: where we have the prevention of a prevention. One theory of causation is that A causes B when B counterfactually depends on A and, as there is such a dependence, proponents of the view must rule that double prevention is causation.<br><br>However, if double prevention is causation, it means that causation can be an extrinsic matter, that the cause and effect (...)
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  45. Stephen Mumford (2008). Russell’s Defence of Idleness. Russell 28 (1).
    Russell has a famous defence of idleness. But I argue that he was not supporting idleness as such. Russell valued the active and productive life. He was instead attacking overwork and defending leisure, where such leisure is used productively to contribute to civilization. This paper offers a critique of Russell’s argument on the grounds that it is difficult to sustain a distinction between activities that do and do not contribute to civilization. The questions are then addressed of whether purely inactive (...)
     
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  46.  21
    Stephen Mumford (2007). A New Solution to the Problem of Negative Truth. In Jean-Maurice Monnoyer (ed.), Metaphysics and Truthmakers. Ontos Verlag 18--313.
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  47.  72
    Stephen Mumford (2007). All the Power in the World. [REVIEW] Journal of Philosophy 104 (8):424-431.
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  48. Stephen Mumford (2007). David Armstrong. Routledge.
    David Armstrong is one of Australia's greatest philosophers. His chief philosophical achievement has been the development of a core metaphysical programme, embracing the topics of universals, laws, modality and facts: a naturalistic metaphysics, consistent with a scientific view of the natural world. It is primarily through his work that Australian philosophy, and Australian metaphysics in particular, enjoys such a high reputation in the rest of the world. In this book Stephen Mumford offers an introduction to the full range of Armstrong's (...)
     
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  49.  78
    Stephen Mumford (2007). Negative Truth and Falsehood. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 107 (1pt1):45 - 71.
    What makes it true when we say that something is not the case? Truthmaker maximalists think that every truth has a truthmaker—some fact in the world—that makes it true. No such facts can be found for the socalled negative truths. If a proposition is true when it has a truthmaker, then it would be false when it has no truthmaker. I therefore argue that negative truths, such as t<p>, are best understood as falsehoods, f<p>.
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  50. Stephen Mumford (2006). Function, Structure, Capacity. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 37 (1):76-80.
  51. Stephen Mumford (ed.) (2006). Powers: A Study in Metaphysics. Clarendon Press.
    George Molnar came to see that the solution to a number of the problems of contemporary philosophy lay in the development of an alternative to Hume's metaphysics. In this work, which was almost completed when its author died, he developed a thorough account of causal powers and succeeded in producing something both highly focused and at the same time wide-ranging.
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  52. Stephen Mumford (2006). The Ungrounded Argument. Synthese 149 (3):471-489.
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  53.  8
    D. Byrne, T. Cross, H. W. de Regt, M. Deutsch, D. Dieks, A. Drewery, J. Heil, H. Hosni, J. McKitrick & S. Mumford (2005). Bradley, DJ, 91. Synthese 144:451.
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  54. Stephen Mumford (2005). Kinds, Essences, Powers. Ratio 18 (4):420–436.
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  55. Stephen Mumford (2005). Laws and Lawlessness. Synthese 144 (3):397-413.
    I develop a metaphysical position that is both lawless and anti-Humean. The position is called realist lawlessness and contrasts with both Humean lawlessness and nomological realism – the claim that there are laws in nature. While the Humean view also allows no laws, realist lawlessness is not Humean because it accepts some necessary connections in nature between distinct properties. Realism about laws, on the other hand, faces a central dilemma. Either laws govern the behaviour of properties from the outside or (...)
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  56.  42
    Stephen Mumford (2005). The True and the False. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83 (2):263 – 269.
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  57. Stephen Mumford (2004). Filled in Space. In B. Gnassounou & M. Kistler (eds.), Dispositions Et Pouvoirs Causaux. Vrin
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  58.  81
    Stephen Mumford (2004). Laws in Nature. Routledge.
    This book outlines a major new theory of natural laws. The book begins with the question of whether there are any genuinely law-like phenomena in nature. The discussion addresses questions currently being debated by metaphysicians such as whether the laws of nature are necessary or contingent and whether a property can be identified independently of its causal role.
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  59. Stephen Mumford (2003). Dispositions. Clarendon Press.
    Stephen Mumford puts forward a new theory of dispositions, showing how central their role is in metaphysics and philosophy of science. Much of our understanding of the physical and psychological world is expressed in terms of dispositional properties--from the solubility of sugar to the belief that zebras have stripes. Mumford discusses what it means to say that something has a property of this kind, and how dispositions can possibly be real things in the world. His clear, straightforward, realist account reveals (...)
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  60. Stephen Mumford (ed.) (2003). Powers: A Study in Metaphysics. Clarendon Press.
    George Molnar came to see that the solution to a number of the problems of contemporary philosophy lay in the development of an alternative to Hume's metaphysics, with real causal powers at its centre. Molnar's eagerly anticipated book setting out his theory of powers was almost complete when he died, and has been prepared for publication by Stephen Mumford, who provides a context-setting introduction.
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  61. Stephen Mumford (ed.) (2003). Russell on Metaphysics: Selections From the Writings of Bertrand Russell. Routledge.
    Is the world of appearances the real world? Are there facts that exist independently of our minds? Are there vague objects? _Russell on Metaphysics_ brings together for the first time a comprehensive selection of Russell's writing on metaphysics in one volume. Russell's major and lasting contribution to metaphysics has been hugely influential and his insights have led to the establishment of analytic philosophy as a dominant stream in philosophy. Stephen Mumford chronicles the metaphysical nature of these insights through accessible introductions (...)
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  62.  14
    Stephen Mumford (2003). Review: Understanding Philosophy of Science. [REVIEW] Mind 112 (446):353-355.
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  63.  3
    Stephen Mumford (2003). Understanding Philosophy of Science. [REVIEW] Mind 112 (446):353-355.
  64. Stephen Mumford (2002). Essences, Kinds, and Laws of Nature. Metascience 11 (3):324-328.
    Review of Brian Ellis's Scientific Essentialism. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001.
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  65. Stephen Mumford (2002). Review of Scientific Essentialism by Brian Ellis. [REVIEW] Metascience 11 (3):324-328.
     
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  66. S. Mumford (2001). John G. Slater , Last Philosophical Testament: The Collected Papers of Bertrand Russell, Volume 11, 1943-1968. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 9 (2):284-286.
     
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  67. Stephen Mumford (2001). Book Review. Is Science Value Free? Values and Scientific Understanding by Hugh Lacey. [REVIEW] Mind 110 (438):495-497.
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  68. Stephen Mumford (2001). Miracles: Metaphysics and Modality. Religious Studies 37 (2):191-202.
    It is argued that miracles are best understood as natural events with supernatural causes and that such causal interaction is logically possible. Such miracles may, or may not, involve violations of natural laws. If violations of laws are possible, Humean supervenience views of laws are best avoided. Where miracles violate laws, it shows that what is naturally impossible may be actual and what is naturally necessary may not be actual. Whether or not miracles actually occur, this demonstrates that the nomic (...)
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  69.  32
    Stephen Mumford (2001). Realism and the Conditional Analysis of Dispositions: Reply to Malzkorn. Philosophical Quarterly 51 (204):375-378.
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  70. Stephen Mumford (2001). The Catholic Doctrine and Reproductive Health. Free Inquiry 21.
     
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  71. S. Mumford (2000). Frank Jackson, Mind, Method and Conditionals: Selected Essays. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 8 (2):259-260.
     
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  72. Stephen Mumford (2000). Normative and Natural Laws. Philosophy 75 (2):265-282.
    A theory of laws is developed that takes from E. J. Lowe the claim of natural laws being consistent with certain classes of exceptions. Neither abnormal cases, such as albino ravens, nor miracles falsify covering laws. This suggests that law statements cannot have the form of a universally quantified conditional. Lowe takes it that this is best explained by natural laws having normative force in the same way as moral laws and laws of the land. I argue that there is (...)
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    Stephen Mumford (1999). Intentionality and the Physical: A New Theory of Disposition Ascription. Philosophical Quarterly 50 (195):215-25.
    This paper has three aims. First, I aim to stress the importance of the issue of the dispositional/categorical distinction in the light of the evident failure of the traditional formulation, which is in terms of conditional entailment. Second, I consider one radical new alternative on offer from Ullin Place: intentionality as the mark of the dispositional. I explain the appeal of physical intentionality, but show it ultimately to be unacceptable. Finally, I suggest what would be a better theory. If we (...)
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  74. S. Mumford (1998). Hoffmann, J. And Rosenkrantz, GS-Substance. Philosophical Books 39:52-53.
     
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  75.  52
    Stephen Mumford (1998). Dispositions. Oxford University Press.
    Mumford puts forward a new theory of dispositions, showing how central their role in metaphysics and philosophy of science is.
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  76. Stephen Mumford (1998). Laws of Nature Outlawed. Dialectica 52 (2):83–101.
    SummaryThere are two rival ways in which events in the world can be explained: the covering law way and the dispositionalist way. The covering law model, which takes the law of nature as its fundamental explanatory unit, faces a number of renown difficulties. Rather than attempt to patch up this approach, the alternative dispositionalist strategy is recommended. On this view, general facts are dependent upon particular facts about what things do, rather than vice versa. This way of viewing the world (...)
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  77. S. Mumford (1996). Virtus Dormitiva, ha, ha, ha. The Philosopher 84 (2):12-15.
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  78.  40
    Stephen Mumford (1996). Conditionals, Functional Essences and Martin on Dispositions. Philosophical Quarterly 46 (182):86-92.
  79.  38
    Stephen Mumford (1995). Ellis and Lierse on Dispositional Essentialism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 73 (4):606 – 612.
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    Stephen Mumford (1995). Properties. Cogito 9 (1):48-54.
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    Stephen Mumford (1995). Perception. Cogito 9 (3):268-273.
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    Stephen Mumford (1995). Dispositions, Bases, Overdetermination and Identities. Ratio 8 (1):42-62.
    In this paper I aim to make sense of our pre‐theoretic intuitions about dispositions by presenting an argument for the identity of a disposition with its putative categorical base. The various possible ontologies for dispositions are outlined. The possibility of an empirical proof of identity is dismissed. Instead an a priori argument for identity is adapted from arguments in the philosophy of mind. I argue that dispositions occupy, by analytic necessity, the same causal roles that categorical bases occupy contingently and (...)
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    Stephen Mumford (1994). Dispositions. Cogito 8 (2):141-146.
    Mumford puts forward a new theory of dispositions, showing how central their role in metaphysics and philosophy of science is. Much of our understanding of the physical and psychological world is expressed in terms of dispositional properties--from the spin of a sub-atomic particle to the solubility of sugar. Mumford discusses what it means to say that something has a property of this kind and how dispositions can possibly be real things in the world.
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    Stephen Mumford (1994). Dispositions, Supervenience and Reduction. Philosophical Quarterly 44 (177):419-438.
    Dispositions may be identical to their categorical bases but should we say, with Quine, that all properties are categorical or, with Popper, that all properties are dispositional? Both positions make implicit claims of ontological reduction but if this consists in nothing more than identity then, identity being a symmetrical relation, neither categorical nor dispositional monism is provided. A supervenience relation may be thought decisive, but if the identities are token- token, reduction is ruled out; if the identities are type- type (...)
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    Stephen Mumford (1993). A Puzzle About Causation. Philosophy Now 7:28-30.
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  86. Stephen Mumford, Philosophical Publications of David Armstrong.
    Part I will deal with the central system of metaphysics that Armstrong developed between 1978 and 1997. This will concern, in turn, the major topics of universals, laws, modality, facts or states of affairs, and dispositions. It will be demonstrated how Armstrong’s distinct contributions to these separate problems came together in a unified and systematic account such that he could be judged as holding a single, very appealing, metaphysical theory.
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