David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophy of the Social Sciences 35 (3):324-338 (2005)
Descriptions of social norms can be explanatory. The erotetic approach to explanation provides a useful framework. I describe one very broad kind of explanation-seeking why-question, a genus that is common to the special sciences, and argue that descriptions of norms can serve as an answer to such why-questions. I draw upon Woodwards recent discussion of the explanatory role of generalizations with a significant degree of invariance. Descriptions of norms provide what is, in effect, a generalization regarding the kind of historically contingent system a group or society, a generalization with a significant degree of invariance. Key Words: explanation invariance norms social sciences erotetic laws.
|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
Todd Jones (2008). Explanations of Social Phenomena: Competing and Complementary Accounts. Metaphilosophy 39 (4-5):621-650.
Todd Jones (2012). Do Customs Compete with Conditioning? Turf Battles and Division of Labor in Social Explanation. Synthese 184 (3):407-430.
Similar books and articles
Marc Lange (1999). Laws, Counterfactuals, Stability, and Degrees of Lawhood. Philosophy of Science 66 (2):243-267.
David Henderson (2002). Norms, Normative Principles, and Explanation: On Not Getting is From Ought. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 32 (3):329-364.
Jani Raerinne (2011). Causal and Mechanistic Explanations in Ecology. Acta Biotheoretica 59 (3):251-271.
Jim Woodward (2001). Law and Explanation in Biology: Invariance is the Kind of Stability That Matters. Philosophy of Science 68 (1):1-20.
Daniel Steel (2006). Methodological Individualism, Explanation, and Invariance. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 36 (4):440-463.
Brad Weslake (2010). Explanatory Depth. Philosophy of Science 77 (2):273-294.
Paul A. Roth (2005). Three Grades of Normative Involvement: Risjord, Stueber, and Henderson on Norms and Explanation. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 35 (3):339-352.
Jaakko Kuorikoski & Petri Ylikoski (2010). Explanatory Relevance Across Disciplinary Boundaries: The Case of Neuroeconomics. Journal of Economic Methodology 17 (2):219–228.
James Woodward (2000). Explanation and Invariance in the Special Sciences. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 51 (2):197-254.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads20 ( #185,423 of 1,796,303 )
Recent downloads (6 months)5 ( #169,168 of 1,796,303 )
How can I increase my downloads?