Defending abduction

Philosophy of Science 66 (3):451 (1999)
Abstract
Charles S. Peirce argued that, besides deduction and induction, there is a third mode of inference which he called " hypothesis " or " abduction." He characterized abduction as reasoning " from effect to cause," and as " the operation of adopting an explanatory hypothesis." Peirce ' s ideas about abduction, which are related also to historically earlier accounts of heuristic reasoning, have been seen as providing a logic of scientific discovery. Alternatively, abduction is interpreted as giving reasons for pursuing a hypothesis. Inference to the best explanation has also been regarded as an important mode of justification, both in everyday life, detective stories, and science. In particular, scientific realism has been defended by an abductive nomiracle argument, while the critics of realism have attempted to show that this appeal to abduction is question - begging, circular, or incoherent. This paper approaches these issues by distinguishing weaker and stronger forms of abduction, and by showing how these types of inferences can be given Peircean and Bayesian probabilistic reconstructions
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DOI 10.1086/392744
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Michael Huemer (2009). Explanationist Aid for the Theory of Inductive Logic. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60 (2):345-375.

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