David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In John Hawthorne & Tamar Gendler (eds.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press 309--336 (2002)
This paper defends the traditional view that the <span class='Hi'>laws</span> of nature are contingent, or, if some of them are necessary, this is due to analytic principles for the individuation of the law-governed properties. Fundamentally, I argue that the supposed explanatory purposes served by taking the <span class='Hi'>laws</span> to be necessary (at least, understood metaphysically, as opposed to semantically)--showing how <span class='Hi'>laws</span> support counterfactuals, how properties are individuated, or how we have knowledge of properties--are in fact undermined by the continued possibility of the imagined scenarios--this time, described neutrally--which seemed to disprove the claim to necessity in the first place. I speculate that this will be true for any proposed necessary a posteriori truths, and is a basis for rejecting their supposed metaphysical significance.
|Keywords||Contingency, Metaphysics, Natural Law|
|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
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Xunwu Chen (2011). Crisis and Possibility: The Ethical Implication of Contingency. Asian Philosophy 21 (3):257 - 268.
Francis Oakley (2005). Natural Law, Laws of Nature, Natural Rights: Continuity and Discontinuity in the History of Ideas. Continuum.
Anjan Chakravartty (2003). The Dispositional Essentialist View of Properties and Laws. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 11 (4):393 – 413.
Anna Sherratt (2001). Are the Laws of Logic Necessary or Contingent? Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 101 (3):379-384.
Cal Ledsham (2010). Love, Power and Consistency: Scotus' Doctrines of God's Power, Contingent Creation, Induction and Natural Law. Sophia 49 (4):557-575.
Chris Swoyer (1982). The Nature of Natural Laws. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 60 (3):203 – 223.
Stephen Mumford (2005). Laws and Lawlessness. Synthese 144 (3):397?413.
Alice Drewery (2005). Essentialism and the Necessity of the Laws of Nature. Synthese 144 (3):381-396.
John Roberts (2010). Some Laws of Nature Are Metaphysically Contingent. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (3):445-457.
Jeffrey K. McDonough (2010). Leibniz's Optics and Contingency in Nature. Perspectives on Science 18 (4):432-455.
Added to index2009-06-22
Total downloads4 ( #534,260 of 1,790,408 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #431,678 of 1,790,408 )
How can I increase my downloads?