Miracles, pessimism and scientific realism

Worrall ([1989]) argued that structural realism provides a ‘synthesis’ of the main pro-realist argument – the ‘No Miracles Argument’, and the main anti-realist argument – the ‘Pessimistic Induction’. More recently, however, it has been claimed (Howson [2000] and Lewis [2001], respectively) that each of these arguments is an instance of the same probabilistic fallacy – sometimes called the ‘base-rate fallacy’. If correct, this clearly seems to undermine structural realism and Magnus and Callender have indeed claimed that both arguments are fallacious and ‘without [them] we lose the rationale for … structural realism’ ([2004], p. 333). I here argue that what have been shown to be fallacious are simply misguided formalisations of ‘the’ arguments and that when they are properly (and modestly) construed they continue to provide powerful motivation for favouring structural realism.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 16,667
External links
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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

392 ( #1,826 of 1,726,249 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

47 ( #25,020 of 1,726,249 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.