David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 82 (61):203-239 (2007)
The rosy dawn of my title refers to that optimistic time when the logical concept of a natural kind originated in Victorian England. The scholastic twilight refers to the present state of affairs. I devote more space to dawn than twilight, because one basic problem was there from the start, and by now those origins have been forgotten. Philosophers have learned many things about classification from the tradition of natural kinds. But now it is in disarray and is unlikely to be put back together again. My argument is less founded on objections to the numerous theories now in circulation, than on the sheer proliferation of incompatible views. There no longer exists what Bertrand Russell called ‘the doctrine of natural kinds’—one doctrine. Instead we have a slew of distinct analyses directed at unrelated projects.
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Citations of this work BETA
Christopher J. Austin (forthcoming). Aristotelian Essentialism: Essence in the Age of Evolution. Synthese:1-18.
Marc Ereshefsky & Thomas A. C. Reydon (2015). Scientific Kinds. Philosophical Studies 172 (4):969-986.
Lisa Gannett (2010). Questions Asked and Unasked: How by Worrying Less About the 'Really Real' Philosophers of Science Might Better Contribute to Debates About Genetics and Race. Synthese 177 (3):363 - 385.
Quayshawn Spencer (2012). What 'Biological Racial Realism' Should Mean. Philosophical Studies 159 (2):181-204.
L. R. Franklin-Hall (2015). Natural Kinds as Categorical Bottlenecks. Philosophical Studies 172 (4):925-948.
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