David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Synthese 154 (2):329-334 (2007)
Marc Alspector-Kelly claims that Bas van Fraassen’s primary challenge to the scientific realist is for the realist to find a way to justify the use of some mode of inference that takes him from the world of observables to knowledge of the world of unobservables without thereby abandoning empiricism. It is argued that any effort to justify such an “inferential wand” must appeal either to synthetic a priori or synthetic a posteriori knowledge. This disjunction turns into a dilemma for the empirically-minded realist as either disjunct leads to unwanted consequences. In this paper, I split the horns of this dilemma by arguing that the realist can justify one particular such mode of inference – abduction – without committing himself to rationalism. The realist may justify this mode of inference by appealing to the analytic a priori axioms of the probability calculus. I show that Peter Lipton’s tripartite defense of abduction constitutes such a method of justification.
|Keywords||Philosophy Philosophy Epistemology Logic Metaphysics Philosophy of Language|
|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
Marc Alspector-Kelly (2004). Seeing the Unobservable: Van Fraassen and the Limits of Experience. [REVIEW] Synthese 140 (3):331-353.
Peter Lipton (2004). Inference to the Best Explanation. Routledge/Taylor and Francis Group.
Timothy McGrew (2003). Confirmation, Heuristics, and Explanatory Reasoning. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 54 (4):553-567.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Towfic Shomar (2008). Bohr as a Phenomenological Realist. Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 39 (2):321 - 349.
Ioannis Votsis (2004). The Epistemological Status of Scientific Theories: An Investigation of the Structural Realist Account. Dissertation, London School of Economics
Juha Saatsi (2007). Living in Harmony: Nominalism and the Explanationist Argument for Realism. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 21 (1):19 – 33.
Ernan McMullin (2003). Van Fraassen's Unappreciated Realism. Philosophy of Science 70 (3):455-478.
Theodore Arabatzis (2001). Can a Historian of Science Be a Scientific Realist? Proceedings of the Philosophy of Science Association 2001 (3):S531-.
Marc Alspector-Kelly (2006). Constructive Empiricism and Epistemic Modesty: Response to van Fraassen and Monton. [REVIEW] Erkenntnis 64 (3):371-379.
Christian Miller (2007). The Conditions of Realism. Journal of Philosophical Research 32:95-132.
Stathis Psillos (2011). Choosing the Realist Framework. Synthese 180 (2):301 - 316.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads142 ( #9,191 of 1,696,233 )
Recent downloads (6 months)20 ( #23,182 of 1,696,233 )
How can I increase my downloads?