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Evan Fales [54]Evan M. Fales [1]
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Profile: Evan Fales (University of Iowa)
  1. Evan Fales, Review of Darwinian Natural Right: The Biological Ethics of Human Nature by Larry Arnhart. [REVIEW]
    It has become something of a leitmotif among evangelical apologetes to argue that morality can have no objective foundation if there is no God. Using a strategy that appeals to many people's strong intuitions that there are objective rights and wrongs, they claim seek to convict atheists of being intellectually committed to moral relativism, subjectivism, or nihilism. Those are, of course, ethical positions that have been advocated by some atheists. But others share the intuition that there are objective moral norms, (...)
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  2. Evan Fales (2013). Is a Science of the Supernatural Possible? In Massimo Pigliucci & Maarten Boudry (eds.), Philosophy of Pseudoscience: Reconsidering the Demarcation Problem. University of Chicago Press. 247.
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  3. Evan Fales (2013). Turtle Epistemology. Philosophical Studies:1-16.
    In “Justification Without Awareness”, Michael Bergmann divides internalist epistemologies into those with a strong awareness requirement and those with a weak awareness requirement; he presents a dilemma, hoisting the “strongs” on one horn, and the “weaks” on the other. Here I reply on behalf of the strong-awareness view, presenting what I take to be a more satisfactory, and more fundamental, reply to Bergmann than I believe has been offered by his other critics, and in particular by Rogers and Matheson in (...)
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  4. Evan Fales (2011). Is Middle Knowledge Possible? Almost. Sophia 50 (1):1-9.
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  5. Evan Fales (2010). Divine Commands and Moral Obligation. Philo 13 (2):151 - 166.
    A popular proof for the existence of God assumes that there are objective moral duties, arguing that this can only be explained by there being a supreme law-giver, namely God. The upshot is either a Divine command theory (DCT) -- or something similar -- or a natural-law theory. I discuss two prominent theories, Robert Adams’s DCT and Stephen Evans’s hybrid DCT/natural-law theory. I argue that they suffer from fatal difficulties. Natural-law theories are plausible, if God exists, but can’t be used (...)
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  6. Evan Fales (2010). Divine Intervention: Metaphysical and Epistemological Puzzles. Routledge.
    Introduction -- How does God do things? -- Divine governance and the laws of nature -- Trouble with time -- Eternal God as author of nature -- What can God know? -- Healed hearts, inspired minds -- Mystical revelations -- Is science a mystic's friend? -/- Divine Intervention is a new look at the question how God can act upon the world, and whether the world can affect God. What, exactly, are miracles, and can God perform them? If so, how? (...)
     
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  7. Evan Fales (2009). Darwin's Doubt, Calvin's Calvary. In Michael Ruse (ed.), Philosophy After Darwin: Classic and Contemporary Readings. Princeton University Press. 309.
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  8. Evan Fales (2009). Review of Stewart Goetz, Freedom, Teleology, and Evil. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2009 (8).
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  9. Evan Fales, Despair, Optimism, and Rebellion. Internet Infidels, Modern Library.
    I will make all my goodness pass before you, and will proclaim before you my name 'the LORD'; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy. But ... you cannot see my face; for man shall not see me and live. Exodus 33:19-20, RSV..
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  10. Evan Fales (2007). Naturalism and Physicalism. In Michael Martin (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Atheism. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
     
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  11. Evan Fales (2005). The Road to Damascus. Faith and Philosophy 22 (4):442-459.
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  12. Evan Fales (2005). World Without Design: The Ontological Consequences of Naturalism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 71 (2):494-497.
  13. Evan Fales (2004). Do Mystics See God? In Michael L. Peterson & Raymond J. VanArragon (eds.), Contemporary Debates in Philosophy of Religion. Blackwell Pub.. 145--148.
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  14. Evan Fales (2004). Proper Basicality. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (2):373–383.
    Foundationalist epistemologies, whether internalist or externalist, ground noetic structures in beliefs that are said to be foundational, or properly basic. It is essential to such epistemologies that they provide clear criteria for proper basicality. This proves, I argue, to be a thorny task, at least insofar as the goal is to provide a psychologically realistic reconstruction of our actual doxastic practices. I examine some of the difficulties, and suggest some implications, in particular for the externalist epistemology of Alvin Plantinga.
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  15. Evan Fales (2004). Review of John Foster, The Divine Lawmaker: Lectures on Induction, Laws of Nature, and the Existence of God. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2004 (9).
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  16. Evan Fales (2003). Alvin Plantinga's Warranted Christian Belief. Noûs 37 (2):353–370.
    This critical study of the third book of Plantinga's trilogy on proper-function epistemology begins by denying that classical foundationalism proposes a deontic conception of justification. Nor is it subject to Gettier counterexamples, as, I show, Plantinga's fallibilism is and must be. Plantinga's central thesis is that there's no way of attacking the rationality of central Christian beliefs without attacking their truth. That, I argue, is not so on several grounds, e.g., because one can demand independent evidence for the existence of (...)
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  17. Lewis Vaughn, Austin Dacey & Evan Fales (2003). The Case for Humanism: An Introduction. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
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  18. Evan Fales (2001). Reformed Epistemology and Biblical Hermeneutics. Philo 4 (2):169-184.
    Literal-minded Christians are enjoying resurgent respectability in intellectual circles. Darwin isn’t the only target: also under attack is the application of modern historiography to Scripture According to Reformed epistemologists, ordinary Christians can directly know that, e.g., Jesus rose from the dead, and evidential concerns can be dismissed. This reversion to a sixteenth century hermeneutic deserves response.
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  19. Evan Fales (2001). Successful Defense?: A Review of In Defense of Miracles. [REVIEW] Philosophia Christi 3 (1):7-35.
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  20. Evan Fales, Are the Gods Apolitical? Philo.
    The attraction between religion and politics is perennial. Sometimes, in its long and checkered history, it has led to an adulterous affair. I want to ask what lies at the heart of this attraction, and whether that can shed any light on the current religious/political scene. But the romance metaphor is at bottom not a good one. I shall argue that, in their originary condition, religion and politics are "closer," both ontologically and in their motivation, than woman and man, closer (...)
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  21. Evan Fales (1999). Can Science Explain Mysticism? Religious Studies 35 (2):213-227.
    Jerome Gellman has recently disputed my claim that a naturalistic explanation for mystical experiences is available, a better explanation than any current attempt to show that God is sometimes perceived in those experiences. Gellman argues (i) that some mystics do not 'fit' the sociological explanation of I. M. Lewis; (ii) that the sociological analysis of tribal mysticism cannot properly be extended to theistic experiences; and (iii) that mystical experiences merit prima facie credence, so the burden of proof falls on the (...)
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  22. Evan Fales (1998). David Ray Griffin, Parapsychology, Philosophy, and Spirituality: A Postmodern Exploration. (Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1997.) Pp. XIV+339, US $59.50 Hb., $19.95 Pk. [REVIEW] Religious Studies 34 (1):103-114.
  23. Evan Fales (1997). Divine Intervention. Faith and Philosophy 14 (2):170-194.
    Some philosophers deny that science can investigate the supernatural - specifically, the nature and actions of God. If a divine being is atemporal, then, indeed, this seems plausible - but only, I shall argue, because such a being could not causally interact with anything. Here I discuss in detail two major attempts, those of Stump and Kretzmann, and of Leftow, to make sense of theophysical causation on the supposition that God is eternal. These views are carefully worked out, and their (...)
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  24. Evan Fales (1996). A Defense of the Given. Lanham: Rowman &Amp; Littlefield.
    The Doctrine of the Given The Myth of the Given A Methodological Problem To a convinced foundationalist, the project of establishing the existence of the ...
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  25. Evan Fales (1996). Mystical Experience as Evidence. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 40 (1):19 - 46.
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  26. Evan Fales (1996). Plantinga's Case Against Naturalistic Epistemology. Philosophy of Science 63 (3):432-451.
    In Warrant and Proper Function, Alvin Plantinga claims that metaphysical naturalism, when joined to a naturalized epistemology, is self-undermining. Plantinga argues that naturalists are committed to a neoDarwinian account of our origins, and that the reliability of our cognitive faculties is improbable or unknown relative to that theory. If the theory is true, then we are in no position to know that, whereas theism, if true, underwrites cognitive reliability. I seek to turn the tables on Plantinga, showing that neoDarwinism provides (...)
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  27. Evan Fales (1996). Scientific Explanations of Mystical Experiences: II. The Challenge to Theism. Religious Studies 32 (3):297 - 313.
    In Part I of this paper, I argued that the mystical experiences of Teresa of Avila are well explained by the anthropological theory of I. M. Lewis. In Part II, I discuss how the causal gap between the social circumstances identified by Lewis and individual phenomenology can be filled in. I then show that Lewis's theory, thus supplemented, is a genuine competitor to the theistic understanding of mystical experience, and that it is much more strongly confirmed by the available (...)
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  28. Evan Fales (1996). Scientific Explanations of Mystical Experiences, Part I: The Case of St. Teresa. Religious Studies 32 (2):143 - 163.
    Several writers have argued for the implausibility of there being naturalistic explanations of mystical experience. These writers recognize that the evidential significance of mystical experiences for theism depends upon whether explanations that exclude supernatural agency can be discounted; but they seem unaware of some of the best scientific work done in this area. Part I of the present paper introduces the theory of I. M. Lewis, an anthropologist, and tests it against the case of St Teresa. I use (...) because of her prominence, and because we have considerable biographical data for her. I conclude that Lewis's approach, suitably supplemented, is strikingly successful in explaining this case. (shrink)
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  29. Evan Fales (1995). Causes and Coincidences. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 55 (2):465-468.
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  30. Evan Fales (1994). Are Christians Obliged to Be Pacifists? Faith and Philosophy 11 (2):298-301.
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  31. Evan Fales (1994). Book Reviews. [REVIEW] Mind 103 (411):391-395.
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  32. Evan M. Fales (1994). Divine Freedom and the Choice of a World. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 35 (2):65 - 88.
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  33. Evan Fales (1993). Are Causal Laws Contingent? In John Bacon, Keith Campbell & Lloyd Reinhardt (eds.), Ontology, Causality and Mind: Essays in Honour of D.M. Armstrong. Cambridge Up.
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  34. Evan Fales (1992). Should God Not Have Created Adam? Faith and Philosophy 9 (2):193-209.
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  35. Evan Fales & Edward A. Wasserman (1992). Causal Knowledge: What Can Psychology Teach Philosophers. Journal of Mind and Behavior 13:1-28.
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  36. E. J. Lowe, Evan Fales, Galen Strawson & Michael Tooley (1991). Causation and Universals.The Secret Connexion: Causation, Realism, and David Hume.Causation: A Realist Approach. Philosophical Quarterly 41 (165):494.
  37. Evan Fales (1990). Causation and Universals. Routledge.
    Then, adopting the view of Armstrong and others that causation is grounded in a second-order relation between universals, he explores a range of topics for ...
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  38. Evan Fales (1989). Antediluvian Theodicy. Faith and Philosophy 6 (3):320-329.
    This paper is a discussion of Eleonore Stump’s “The Problem of Evil.” Stump, I argue, has attempted a theodicy with several desirable features; among them, an effort to provide a positive account of the compatibility of natural evils with God’s goodness that makes use of specifically Christian doctrines. However, the doctrines Stump makes use of---and, in particular, her conception of hell and her interpretation of original sin---raise, I suggest, more problems than they solve.
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  39. Evan Fales (1989). Michael Luntley, Language, Logic, and Experience: The Case for Anti-Realism Reviewed By. Philosophy in Review 9 (11):448-451.
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  40. Evan Fales (1988). How to Be a Metaphysical Realist. Midwest Studies in Philosophy 12 (1):253-274.
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  41. Evan Fales (1986). Essentialism and the Elementary Constituents of Matter. Midwest Studies in Philosophy 11 (1):391-402.
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  42. Evan Fales (1984). Causation and Induction. Midwest Studies in Philosophy 9 (1):113-134.
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  43. Evan Fales (1984). Davidson's Compatibilism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 45 (December):227-246.
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  44. Evan Fales (1982). Generic Universals. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 60 (1):29 – 39.
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  45. Evan Fales (1982). Natural Kinds and Freaks of Nature. Philosophy of Science 49 (1):67-90.
    Essentialism--understood as the doctrine that there are natural kinds--can be sustained with respect to the most fundamental physical entities of the world, as I elsewhere argue. In this paper I take up the question of the existence of natural kinds among complex structures built out of these elementary ones. I consider a number of objections to essentialism, in particular Locke's puzzle about the existence of borderline cases. A number of recent attempts to justify biological taxonomy are critically examined. I conclude (...)
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  46. Evan Fales (1980). Uniqueness and Historical Laws. Philosophy of Science 47 (2):260-276.
    This paper presents an argument for the claim that historical events are unique in a nontrivial sense which entails the inapplicability of the Hempelian D-N model to historical explanations. Some previous criticisms of Hempel are shown to be general criticisms of the D-N model which can be outflanked in cases where a reduction to fundamental laws is available. I then survey grounds for denying that explanations by reasons can be effectively reduced to causal explanations, and for rejecting methodological individualism. I (...)
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  47. Evan Fales (1979). Relative Essentialism. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 30 (4):349-370.
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  48. Evan Fales (1978). Opacity in the Attitudes. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 8 (4):725 - 752.
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  49. Evan Fales (1978). Theoretical Simplicity and Defeasibility. Philosophy of Science 45 (2):273-288.
    Theoretical simplicity is difficult to characterize, and evidently can depend upon a number of distinct factors. One such desirable characteristic is that the laws of a theory have relatively few "counterinstances" whose accommodation requires the invocation of a ceteris paribus condition and ancillary explanation. It is argued that, when one theory is reduced to another, such that the laws of the second govern the behavior of the parts of the entities in the domain of the first, there is a characteristic (...)
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