David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 53 (4):477-496 (2002)
The logical empiricists held that an analogical hypothesis does not gain any acceptability from the analogy on which it is founded. On this view, the acceptability of a hypothesis cannot be discounted by criticizing the foundational analogy. Yet scientists commonly appear to level exactly this sort of criticism. If scientists are able to discount the acceptability of analogical hypotheses in this way, then the logical empiricist view is mistaken. I analyze four forms of analogy counterargument, disanalogy, misanalogy, counteranalogy, and false analogy, with examples from the debate over the asteroid impact hypothesis. These counterarguments do address the acceptability of analogical hypotheses, indicating that analogies can confer acceptability, confirmation notwithstanding. 1 Introduction 2 The asteroid impact hypothesis 3 Analogy counterarguments 3.1 Disanalogy 3.2 Misanalogy 3.3 Counteranalogy 3.4 False analogy 4 Acceptability 5 Conclusions.
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