David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophy of Science 74 (1):28-47 (2007)
What is the relation between coherence and truth? This paper rejects numerous answers to this question, including the following: truth is coherence; coherence is irrelevant to truth; coherence always leads to truth; coherence leads to probability, which leads to truth. I will argue that coherence of the right kind leads to at least approximate truth. The right kind is explanatory coherence, where explanation consists in describing mechanisms. We can judge that a scientific theory is progressively approximating the truth if it is increasing its explanatory coherence in two key respects: broadening by explaining more phenomena and deepening by investigating layers of mechanisms. I sketch an explanation of why deepening is a good epistemic strategy and discuss the prospect of deepening knowledge in the social sciences and everyday life.
|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
Shelby D. Hunt (2011). Theory Status, Inductive Realism, and Approximate Truth: No Miracles, No Charades. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 25 (2):159 - 178.
Adolfas Mackonis (2013). Inference to the Best Explanation, Coherence and Other Explanatory Virtues. Synthese 190 (6):975-995.
Dunja Šešelja & Christian Straßer (2013). Abstract Argumentation and Explanation Applied to Scientific Debates. Synthese 190 (12):2195-2217.
Austyn Snowden & John Atkinson (2012). Concurrent Analysis: A Pragmatic Justification. Nursing Philosophy 13 (2):126-141.
Paul Thagard (2012). Coherence: The Price is Right. Southern Journal of Philosophy 50 (1):42-49.
Similar books and articles
Staffan Angere (2008). Coherence as a Heuristic. Mind 117 (465):1-26.
Richard Fumerton (1994). The Incoherence of Coherence Theories. Journal of Philosophical Research 19:89-102.
Dale Dorsey (2006). A Coherence Theory of Truth in Ethics. Philosophical Studies 127 (3):493 - 523.
Erik J. Olsson (2005). The Impossibility of Coherence. Erkenntnis 63 (3):387 - 412.
Tomoji Shogenji (2008). Against Coherence: Truth, Probability, Justification. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 77 (1):292-296.
Charles B. Cross (1995). Probability, Evidence, and the Coherence of the Whole Truth. Synthese 103 (2):153 - 170.
Erik J. Olsson (2005). Against Coherence: Truth, Probability, and Justification. Oxford University Press.
Keith Lehrer (2005). Coherence and the Truth Connection. Erkenntnis 63 (3):413 - 423.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads170 ( #3,583 of 1,096,679 )
Recent downloads (6 months)23 ( #4,798 of 1,096,679 )
How can I increase my downloads?