David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In Stephen H. Kellert, Helen E. Longino & C. Kenneth Waters (eds.), Scientific Pluralism, Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science. University of Minnesota Press 167-189 (2006)
The evolutionary maintenance of sexual reproduction is a case of explanatory pluralism of central importance to evolutionary biology. I analyze this pluralism from an epistemological perspective. My thesis is that the various explanations of sex are explanatory by virtue of local factors and hence are importantly distinct from one another and cannot be subsumed under a single unifying framework. A critic may argue that philosophical accounts of mechanism can provide just such a framework. I show that this attempt at unification fails because the accounts of sex are not explanatory simply in light of being their being mechanistic; rather they are explanatory because they are particular kinds of mechanisms. The explanatory power of a mechanism is dependent on its epistemological context and the contexts of these mechanisms differ.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Philippe Huneman (2010). Topological Explanations and Robustness in Biological Sciences. Synthese 177 (2):213-245.
Karl-Dieter Opp (2005). Explanations by Mechanisms in the Social Sciences. Problems, Advantages and Alternatives. Mind and Society 4 (2):163-178.
Phyllis McKay Illari & Jon Williamson (2011). Mechanisms Are Real and Local. In Phyllis McKay Illari, Federica Russo & Jon Williamson (eds.), Causality in the Sciences. OUP Oxford
Jean Lachapelle (2000). Cultural Evolution, Reductionism in the Social Sciences, and Explanatory Pluralism. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 30 (3):331-361.
Carla Fehr (2001). Pluralism and Sex: More Than a Pragmatic Issue. Proceedings of the Philosophy of Science Association 2001 (3):S237-.
Caterina Marchionni (2008). Explanatory Pluralism and Complementarity: From Autonomy to Integration. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 38 (3):314-333.
Jeffry L. Ramsey (2008). Mechanisms and Their Explanatory Challenges in Organic Chemistry. Philosophy of Science 75 (5):970-982.
Carla Fehr, Sex and Explanatory Pluralism: Is It a Case of Causal Mechanism Versus Unifying Theories of Explanation?
Carla Fehr (2001). The Evolution of Sex: Domains and Explanatory Pluralism. Biology and Philosophy 16 (2):145-170.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads34 ( #80,271 of 1,700,378 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #88,892 of 1,700,378 )
How can I increase my downloads?