Normic laws, nonmonotonic reasoning, and the unity of science

In S. Rahman (ed.), Logic, Epistemology, and the Unity of Science. Dordrecht, Kluwer. 181-211 (2004)
Abstract
Normic laws have the form "if A, then normally B". This paper attempts to show that if a philosophical analysis of normic laws (1, 4) is combined with certain developments in nonmono- tonic logic (2, 3), the following problems in philosophy of science can be seen in a new pers- pective which, at least in many cases, allows to improve their received analysis: explanation and individual case understanding in the humanities (1, 2), an evolution-theoretic foundation of normic laws which explains their omnipresence and establishes a the connection between prototypi- cal and statstical normality, (¤4), ceteris paribus laws (¤5), differences between physical versus non-physical sciences (¤6) and finally, theory-protection through auxiliary hypotheses (¤7).
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