David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Australasian Journal of Philosophy 85 (2):307 – 324 (2007)
Recently, proponents of Humean Supervenience have challenged the plausibility of the intuition that the laws of nature 'govern', or guide, the evolution of events in the universe. Certain influential thought experiments authored by John Carroll, Michael Tooley, and others, rely strongly on such intuitions. These thought experiments are generally regarded as playing a central role in the lawhood debate, suggesting that the Mill-Ramsey-Lewis view of the laws of nature, and the related doctrine of the Humean Supervenience of laws, are false. In this paper, I take on these recent challenges, arguing that the intuition that the laws govern should be taken seriously. Still, I find the recent discussions insightful, in certain ways. Employing some ideas from one of the critics (Barry Loewer), I draw some non-standard conclusions about the significance of the thought experiments to the lawhood debate.
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References found in this work BETA
Tim Maudlin (2007/2009). The Metaphysics Within Physics. Oxford University Press.
Saul Kripke (2010). Naming and Necessity. In Darragh Byrne & Max Kölbel (eds.), Philosophy. Routledge 431-433.
Bas C. Van Fraassen (1989). Laws and Symmetry. Oxford University Press.
John W. Carroll, Laws of Nature. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
David Lewis (1994). Humean Supervenience Debugged. Mind 103 (412):473--490.
Citations of this work BETA
Heather Demarest (2015). Fundamental Properties and the Laws of Nature. Philosophy Compass 10 (5):334-344.
Travis Dumsday (2013). Laws of Nature Don't Have Ceteris Paribus Clauses, They Are Ceteris Paribus Clauses. Ratio 26 (2):134-147.
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