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  1. The Nature of Explanation.Peter Achinstein - 1983 - Oxford University Press.
    Offering a new approach to scientific explanation, this book focuses initially on the explaining act itself.
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  2. Explanation and Metaphysics.Alexander Bird - 2005 - Synthese 143 (1-2):89-107.
    Is the nature of explanation a metaphysical issue? Or has it more to do with psychology and pragmatics? To put things in a different way: what are primary relata in an explanation? What sorts of thing explain what other sorts of thing? David Lewis identifies two senses of ‘explanation’ (Lewis 1986, 217–218). In the first sense, an explanation is an act of explaining. I shall call this the subjectivist sense, since its existence depends on some subject doing the explaining. Hence (...)
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  3. Scientists’ Use of Diagrams in Developing Mechanistic Explanations: A Case Study From Chronobiology.Daniel C. Burnston, Benjamin Sheredos, Adele Abrahamsen & William Bechtel - 2014 - Pragmatics and Cognition 22 (2):224-243.
  4. Background Shifts Affect Explanatory Style: How a Pragmatic Theory of Explanation Accounts for Background Effects in the Generation of Explanations.Seth Chin-Parker & Alexandra Bradner - 2009 - Cognitive Processing.
  5. Explanation and the Theory of Questions.Charles B. Cross - 1991 - Erkenntnis 34 (2):237 - 260.
    In The Scientific Image B. C. van Fraassen argues that a theory of explanation ought to take the form of a theory of why-questions, and a theory of this form is what he provides. Van Fraassen's account of explanation is good, as far as it goes. In particular, van Fraassen's theory of why-questions adds considerable illumination to the problem of alternative explanations in psychodynamics. But van Fraassen's theory is incomplete because it ignores those classes of explanations that are answers not (...)
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  6. Modelling Molecules: Beyond the Epistemic-Pragmatic Dichotomy.Henk W. de Regt - unknown
    I argue that scientific explanation has a pragmatic dimension that is epistemically relevant. Philosophers with an objectivist approach to scientific explanation (e.g. Hempel, Trout) hold that the pragmatic aspects of explanation do not have any epistemic import. I argue against this view by focusing on the role of models in scientific explanation. Applying recent accounts of modelling (Cartwright, Morgan and Morrison) to a case-study of nineteenth-century physics, I analyse the pragmatic dimension of the process of model construction. I highlight the (...)
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  7. Scientific Understanding: Philosophical Perspectives.Henk De Regt, Sabina Leonelli & Kai Eigner (eds.) - 2009 - University of Pittsburgh Press.
    The chapters in this book highlight the multifaceted nature of the process of scientific research.
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  8. The Pragmatic-Rhetorical Theory of Explanation.Jan Faye - 2007 - In Johannes Persson & Petri Ylikoski (eds.), Rethinking Explanation. Springer. pp. 43--68.
    The pragmatic theory of explanation is an attempt to see explanation as a linguistic response to a cognitive problem where the content of the response depends on the context of the scientific inquiry. The present paper draws on the rhetorical situation, as it is defined by Loyld Bitzer, in order to understand how the context may influence the content as well as the acceptability of the response.
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  9. Interpretation in the Natural Sciences.Jan Faye - unknown
    Interpretation in science has gained little attention in the past because philosophers of science believed that interpretation belongs to the context of discovery or must be associated with meaning. But scientists often speak about interpretation when they report their findings. Elsewhere I have argue in favour of a pragmatic-rhetorical theory of explanation, and it is in light of this theory that I suggest we can understand interpretation in the natural sciences.
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  10. The Pragmatic-Rhetorical Theory of Explanation.Jan Faye - unknown
    The pragmatic theory of explanation is an attempt to see explanation as a linguistic response to a cognitive problem where the content of the response depends on the context of the scientific inquiry. The present paper draws on the rhetorical situation, as it is defined by Loyld Bitzer, in order to understand how the context may influence the content as well as the acceptability of the response.
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  11. The Meta-Explanatory Question.L. R. Franklin-Hall - manuscript
    Philosophical theories of explanation characterize the difference between correct and incorrect explanations. While remaining neutral as to which of these ‘first-order’ theories is right, this paper asks the ‘meta-explanatory’ question: is the difference between correct and incorrect explanation real, i.e., objective or mind-independent? After offering a framework for distinguishing realist from anti-realist views, I sketch three distinct paths to explanatory anti-realism.
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  12. L'explication en biologie.Marie I. Kaiser - 2014 - In F. Merlin & T. Hoquet (eds.), Précis de Philosophie de la biologie [Handbook Philosophy of Biology]. Paris, France: Vuibert Press. pp. 143-155.
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  13. Van Fraassen on Explanation.Philip Kitcher & Wesley Salmon - 1987 - Journal of Philosophy 84 (6):315-330.
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  14. On Causal Attribution.B. Ingemar B. Lindahl - 2009 - Dissertation, Stockholm University
    This dissertation treats of the problem of attributing the occurrence of an individual event or state to a single cause — a problem commonly understood either as a question of distinguishing the cause from the mere conditions or as a matter of singling out, from several causes, one cause, as the cause. The main purpose of the study is to clarify some basic concepts, and some criteria of ascertainment of the cause, that may be discerned in the literature on causal (...)
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  15. Reductive Explanation in the Biological Sciences.Kaiser Marie I. - 2015 - Cham: Springer.
    Back cover: This book develops a philosophical account that reveals the major characteristics that make an explanation in the life sciences reductive and distinguish them from non-reductive explanations. Understanding what reductive explanations are enables one to assess the conditions under which reductive explanations are adequate and thus enhances debates about explanatory reductionism. The account of reductive explanation presented in this book has three major characteristics. First, it emerges from a critical reconstruction of the explanatory practice of the life sciences itself. (...)
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  16. The Epistemic Value of Explanation.Andrés Páez - unknown
    In this paper I defend the idea that there is a sense in which it is meaningful and useful to talk about objective understanding, and that to characterize that notion it is necessary to formulate an account of explanation that makes reference to the beliefs and epistemic goals of the participants in a cognitive enterprise. Using the framework for belief revision developed by Isaac Levi, I analyze the conditions that information must fulfill to be both potentially explanatory and epistemically valuable (...)
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  17. Rethinking Explanation.Johannes Persson & Petri Ylikoski (eds.) - 2007 - Springer.
    This book highlights some of the conceptual problems that still need to be solved and points out a number of fresh philosophical ideas to explore.
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  18. Theories of Explanation.Joseph C. Pitt (ed.) - 1988 - Oxford University Press.
    Since the publication of Carl Hempel and Paul Oppenheim's ground-breaking work "Studies in the Logic of Explanation," the theory of explanation has remained a major topic in the philosophy of science. This valuable collection provides readers with the opportunity to study some of the classic essays on the theory of explanation along with the best examples of the most recent work being done on the topic. In addition to the original Hempel and Oppenheim paper, the volume includes Scriven's critical reaction (...)
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  19. Causal Patterns and Adequate Explanations.Angela Potochnik - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (5):1163-1182.
    Causal accounts of scientific explanation are currently broadly accepted (though not universally so). My first task in this paper is to show that, even for a causal approach to explanation, significant features of explanatory practice are not determined by settling how causal facts bear on the phenomenon to be explained. I then develop a broadly causal approach to explanation that accounts for the additional features that I argue an explanation should have. This approach to explanation makes sense of several aspects (...)
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  20. Toulmin on Ideals of Natural Order.Richard L. Purtill - 1971 - Synthese 22 (3-4):431 - 437.
    In this paper I criticize Toulmin's concept of Ideals of Natural Order and his account of the role these Ideals play in scientific explanation as given in his book, Foresight and Understanding. I argue that Toulmin's account of Ideals of Natural Order as those theories taken to be self evident by scientists at a given time introduces an undesirable subjectivism into his account of scientific explanation. I argue also that the history of science, especially the recent history of microphysics, does (...)
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  21. A Contextual Approach to Scientific Understanding.Henk Regt & Dennis Dieks - 2005 - Synthese 144 (1):137-170.
    Achieving understanding of nature is one of the aims of science. In this paper we offer an analysis of the nature of scientific understanding that accords with actual scientific practice and accommodates the historical diversity of conceptions of understanding. Its core idea is a general criterion for the intelligibility of scientific theories that is essentially contextual: which theories conform to this criterion depends on contextual factors, and can change in the course of time. Our analysis provides a general account of (...)
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  22. The Pragmatics of Scientific Explanation.Matti Sintonen - 1984 - Academic Bookstore [Distributor].
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  23. Henk W. De Regt, Sabina Leonelli and Kai Eigner , Scientific Understanding: Philosophical Perspectives. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2009. Pp. Ix+352. ISBN 978-0-8229-4378-6. $65.00. [REVIEW]Jacob Stegenga - 2011 - British Journal for the History of Science 44 (4):578-580.
  24. Causation, Unification, and the Adequacy of Explanations of Facts.Erik Weber & Jeroen Van Bouwel - 2009 - Theoria. An International Journal for Theory, History and Foundations of Science 24 (3):301-320.
    Pluralism with respect to the structure of explanations of facts is not uncommon. Wesley Salmon, for instance, distinguished two types of explanation: causal explanations (which provide insight in the causes of the fact we want to explain) and unification explanations (which fit the explanandum into a unified world view). The pluralism which Salmon and others have defended is compatible with several positions about the exact relation between these two types of explanations. We distinguish four such positions, and argue in favour (...)
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  25. Mechanistic Explanation Without the Ontic Conception.Cory Wright - 2012 - European Journal of Philosophy of Science 2 (3):375-394.
    The ontic conception of scientific explanation has been constructed and motivated on the basis of a putative lexical ambiguity in the term explanation. I raise a puzzle for this ambiguity claim, and then give a deflationary solution under which all ontically-rendered talk of explanation is merely elliptical; what it is elliptical for is a view of scientific explanation that altogether avoids the ontic conception. This result has revisionary consequences for New Mechanists and other philosophers of science, many of whom have (...)
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  26. The Idea of Contrastive Explanandum.Petri Ylikoski - 2007 - In Johannes Persson & Petri Ylikoski (eds.), Rethinking Explanation. Springer. pp. 27--42.
  27. Understanding Interests and Causal Explanation.Petri Ylikoski - 2001 - Dissertation, University of Helsinki