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  1. Thought Experiments.A. Sorensen Roy - 1998 - Oxford University Press USA.
    Can merely thinking about an imaginary situation provide evidence for how the world actually is--or how it ought to be? In this lively book, Roy A. Sorensen addresses this question with an analysis of a wide variety of thought experiments ranging from aesthetics to zoology. Presenting the first general theory of thought experiment, he sets it within an evolutionary framework and integrates recent advances in experimental psychology and the history of science, with special emphasis on Ernst Mach and Thomas Kuhn. (...)
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  2. Experiment Und Exploration: Bildung Als Experimentelle Form der Welterschliessung.Sönke Ahrens - 2011 - Transcript.
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  3. Can Thought Experiments Prove Anything About the Will.George Ainslie - 2007 - In Don Ross, David Spurrett, Harold Kincaid & G. Lynn Stephens (eds.), Distributed Cognition and the Will: Individual Volition and Social Context. MIT Press.
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  4. Actions, Thought-Experiments and the 'Principle of Alternate Possibilities'.Maria Alvarez - 2009 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 87 (1):61 – 81.
    In 1969 Harry Frankfurt published his hugely influential paper 'Alternate Possibilities and Moral Responsibility' in which he claimed to present a counterexample to the so-called 'Principle of Alternate Possibilities' ('a person is morally responsible for what he has done only if he could have done otherwise'). The success of Frankfurt-style cases as counterexamples to the Principle has been much debated since. I present an objection to these cases that, in questioning their conceptual cogency, undercuts many of those debates. Such cases (...)
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  5. Counterfactual Truths: The Logical Structure of Argumentative Thought Experiments.Javier Y. Álvarez-Vázquez - unknown
    Argumentative thought experiments are structurally conditional clauses. They can hence be formalized by means of the principle of modus ponendo ponens, as well as of modus tollendo tollens. In contrast to the practice in formal logic, exponents of argumentative thought experiments claim that the logical validity of a conclusion drawn within the framework of a particular conditional argument also holds beyond the particular conditional in question. In this paper, I articulate the criticism that this claim is wrong by arguing that (...)
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  6. Thought Experiments and Conceivability Conditions.D. A. Anapolitanos - 1991 - In Tamara Horowitz (ed.), Thought Experiments in Science and Philosophy. Rowman & Littlefield.
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  7. Experiments and Concepts.H. Andersen - 2008 - In U. Feest & G. Hon (eds.), Generating Experimental Knowledge. Max Planck Institute for the History of Science. pp. 340--27.
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  8. The Advantages of Theft Over Honest Toil. A Comment on David Atkinson.Daniel Andler - 2003 - In M. C. Galavotti (ed.), Observation and Experiment in the Natural and Social Sciences.
    David Atkinson asks whether nonempirical constructions can lead to genuine knowledge in science, and answers in the negative. Thought experiments, in his view, are to be commended only insofar as they eventually lead to real experiments. The claim does not rely on a general study, conceptual or historical, of thought experiments as such: the range of the paper is at once narrower and broader. Atkinson views thought experiments as commonly understood as just one kind of episode in the development of (...)
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  9. Wilkes, Kathleen V., "Real People: Personal Idenity Without Thought Experiments". [REVIEW]Brennan Andrew - 1990 - Mind 99:305.
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  10. Imagination in Thought Experimentation: Sketching a Cognitive Approach to Thought Experiments.Margherita Arcangeli - 2010 - In W. Carnielli L. Magnani (ed.), Model-Based Reasoning in Science and Technology. pp. 571--587.
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  11. The Anatomy Of Three Thought Experiments In Plato.Andre Archie - 2008 - Existentia 18 (3-4):275-292.
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  12. The Anatomy of Three Thought Experiments in Plato's Republic, Apology, and Alcibiades Minor.Andre M. Archie - 2010 - Journal of Philosophical Research 35:305-321.
    I argue that Plato’s use of thought experiments anticipate many of the themes discussed by Thomas S. Kuhn’s classic essay, “A Function for Thought Experiments.” Kuhn’s concern is that thought experiments satisfy the condition of verisimilitude. That is, thought experiments must not be conducted merely to alter the conceptual apparatus of the scientist regarding the phenomenon explored, but rather to alter the scientist’s conceptual apparatus for the sake of altering his actions (i.e., practical rationality). Plato, too, is quite concerned with (...)
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  13. On Thought Experiments as a Priori Science.Richard Arthur - 1999 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 13 (3):215 – 229.
    Against Norton's claim that all thought experiments can be reduced to explicit arguments, I defend Brown's position that certain thought experiments yield a priori knowledge. They do this, I argue, not by allowing us to perceive “Platonic universals” (Brown), even though they may contain non-propositional components that are epistemically indispensable, but by helping to identify certain tacit presuppositions or “natural interpretations” (Feyerabend's term) that lead to a contradiction when the phenomenon is described in terms of them, and by suggesting a (...)
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  14. Thought Experiments in Science and in Science Education.Mervi A. Asikainen & Pekka E. Hirvonen - 2014 - In Michael R. Matthews (ed.), International Handbook of Research in History, Philosophy and Science Teaching. Springer. pp. 1235-1256.
    This chapter will discuss the role of thought experiments in science and in science teaching. The constructive and destructive roles played by thought experiments in the construction of scientific theories can be used in science teaching to help students to understand the processes of science. In addition, they have potential to be used as a teaching tool for developing students’ conceptual understanding. The use of thought experiments can also increase students’ interest in science and help them in understanding situations beyond (...)
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  15. Experiments and Thought Experiments in Natural Science.David Atkinson - 2003 - Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science 232:209-226.
    My theme is thought experiment in natural science, and its relation to real experiment. I shall defend the thesis that thought experiments that do not lead to theorizing and to a real experiment are generally of much less value that those that do so. To illustrate this thesis I refer to three examples, from three very different periods, and with three very different kinds of status. The first is the classic thought experiment in which Galileo imagined that he had, by (...)
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  16. An Introduction to Philosophical Methods. By Chris Daly. (Toronto: Broadview, 2010. Pp. 257. US$32.95.).Paul Audi - 2012 - Philosophical Quarterly 62 (246):192-195.
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  17. Experiments in Living.Neera Badhwar - 2006 - The Philosophers' Magazine 35 (35):58-61.
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  18. The Duck That Won the Lottery: 100 New Experiments for the Armchair Philosopher.Julian Baggini - 2008 - Plume.
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  19. The Pig That Wants to Be Eaten: 100 Experiments for the Armchair Philosopher.Julian Baggini - 2006 - Plume.
    Both entertaining and startling, The Pig That Wants to Be Eaten offers one hundred philosophical puzzles that stimulate thought on a host of moral, social, and personal dilemmas. Taking examples from sources as diverse as Plato and Steven Spielberg, author Julian Baggini presents abstract philosophical issues in concrete terms, suggesting possible solutions while encouraging readers to draw their own conclusions: Lively, clever, and thought-provoking, The Pig That Wants to Be Eaten is a portable feast for the mind that is sure (...)
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  20. The Pig That Wants to Be Eaten: And Ninety-Nine Other Thought Experiments.Julian Baggini - 2005 - Granta.
    This book includes experiments that cover identity, religion, art, ethics, language, knowledge and more.
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  21. The Philosophers Toolkit: A Compendium of Philosophical Concepts and Methods.Julian Baggini & Peter S. Fosl - 2008 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    _ The Philosophers' Toolkit_ provides all the intellectual equipment necessary to engage with and participate in philosophical argument, reading and reflection. Each of its 87 entries explains how to use an important concept or argumentative technique accurately and effectively.
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  22. Just What Do We Have in Mind?Lynne Rudder Baker - 1985 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 10 (1):25-48.
    Nevertheless, I believe that, as it has been construed recently, the assumption is false. At the very least, it does not deserve the largely unquestioned status it enjoys, as I hope to show by a graduated series of thought experiments. I present the thought experiments as a series to expose a shared inadequacy in a variety of individualistic views, from type-type physicalism to the most sophisticated methodological solipsism; and I present them as graduated to suggest that having accepted the first (...)
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  23. Conceptual Analysis and Epistemic Progress.Magdalena Balcerak Jackson - 2013 - Synthese 190 (15):3053-3074.
    This essay concerns the question of how we make genuine epistemic progress through conceptual analysis. Our way into this issue will be through consideration of the paradox of analysis. The paradox challenges us to explain how a given statement can make a substantive contribution to our knowledge, even while it purports merely to make explicit what one’s grasp of the concept under scrutiny consists in. The paradox is often treated primarily as a semantic puzzle. However, in “Sect. 1” I argue (...)
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  24. Letter to Aristotle.James Bardis - forthcoming - In Conference Proceedings of IICAHHawaii2017.
    …A reconstructed imaginal account of Alexander’s (the Great) historical letter to Aristotle pursuant to his (in-) famous meeting with the gymnosophist Dandimus on the paradoxes of Zeno ( presaging those of Nagarjuna ) as a means of presenting a synthesis of the stasis and dynamism implicit in the potential of a phenomenally real world beyond a rigid designation of a chain-of-being taxonomy where animal dignity resides side by side with predator-prey relations and a mind-laden ( theory ) of evolution.
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  25. Back to the Self and the Future.S. Beck - 1998 - South African Journal of Philosophy 17 (3):211-225.
    The thought-experiment presented by Bernard Williams in 'The self and the future' continues to draw the attention of writers in the debate about personal identity. While few of them agree on what implications it has for the debate, almost all agree that those implications are significant ones. Some have even claimed that it has consequences not only for personal identity, but also concerning the viability of thought-experiment as a method. This paper surveys what these consequences might be at both levels (...)
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  26. Reconsidering a Transplant: A Response to Wagner.Simon Beck - 2016 - South African Journal of Philosophy 35 (2):132-140.
    Nils-Frederic Wagner takes issue with my argument that influential critics of “transplant” thought experiments make two cardinal mistakes. He responds that the mistakes I identify are not mistakes at all. The mistakes are rather on my part, in that I have not taken into account the conceptual genesis of personhood, that my view of thought experiments is idiosyncratic and possibly self-defeating, and in that I have ignored important empirical evidence about the relationship between brains and minds. I argue that my (...)
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  27. Technological Fictions and Personal Identity: On Ricoeur, Schechtman and Analytic Thought Experiments.Simon Beck - 2016 - Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology 47 (2):117-132.
    Paul Ricoeur and Marya Schechtman express grave doubts about the acceptability and informativeness of the thought-experiments employed by analytic philosophers (notably Derek Parfit) in the debate about personal identity, and for what appear to be related reasons. I consider their reasoning and argue that their reasons fail to justify their doubts. I go on to argue that, from this discussion of possible problems concerning select thought-experiments, something positive can be learned about personal identity.
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  28. Can Parables Work?Simon Beck - 2011 - Philosophy and Theology 23 (1):149-165.
    While theories about interpreting biblical and other parables have long realised the importance of readers’ responses to the topic, recent results in social psychology concerning systematic self-deception raise unforeseen problems. In this paper I first set out some of the problems these results pose for the authority of fictional thought-experiments in moral philosophy. I then consider the suggestion that biblical parables face the same problems and as a result cannot work as devices for moral or religious instruction in the way (...)
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  29. These Bizarre Fictions: Thought-Experiments, Our Psychology and Our Selves.Simon Beck - 2006 - Philosophical Papers 35 (1):29-54.
    Philosophers have traditionally used thought-experiments in their endeavours to find a satisfactory account of the self and personal identity. Yet there are considerations from empirical psychology as well as related ones from philosophy itself that appear to completely undermine the method of thought-experiment. This paper focuses on both sets of considerations and attempts a defence of the method.
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  30. The Method of Possible Worlds.Simon Beck - 1992 - Metaphilosophy 23 (1-2):119-131.
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  31. Parfit and the Russians (Personal Identity and Moral Concepts).Simon Beck - 1989 - Analysis 49 (4):205-209.
  32. Interrogating the ‘Ticking Bomb Scenario’: Reassessing the Thought Experiment.Simon Beck & Stephen de Wijze - 2015 - International Journal of Applied Philosophy 29 (1):53-70.
    The aim of this paper is to re-evaluate the manner in which the Ticking Bomb Scenario (TBS), a thought experiment in philosophical enquiry, has been used in the discussion of the justifiability or otherwise of forward-looking interrogational torture (FLIT). The paper argues that criticisms commonly raised against the thought experiment are often inappropriate or irrelevant. A great many criticisms misunderstand the way in which thought experiments in general, and the TBS in particular, are supposed to work in philosophical (and for (...)
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  33. Experiments in Thinking.Jeffrey Bell - 2014 - Philosophy Today 58 (3):487-498.
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  34. Epistemic Ping-Pong: A Critical Review of Marek Picha’s Thought Experiments.Radim Bělohrad - 2012 - Human Affairs 22 (3):448-453.
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  35. Thought Experiments and Semantic Competence.A. Benejam - 2003 - In Maria J. Frapolli & E. Romero (eds.), Meaning, Basic Self-Knowledge, and Mind. CSLI Publications.
  36. Impossible Worlds and the Logic of Imagination.Francesco Berto - 2017 - Erkenntnis 82 (6):1277-1297.
    I want to model a finite, fallible cognitive agent who imagines that p in the sense of mentally representing a scenario—a configuration of objects and properties—correctly described by p. I propose to capture imagination, so understood, via variably strict world quantifiers, in a modal framework including both possible and so-called impossible worlds. The latter secure lack of classical logical closure for the relevant mental states, while the variability of strictness captures how the agent imports information from actuality in the imagined (...)
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  37. On Conceiving the Inconsistent.Francesco Berto - 2014 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 114 (1pt1):103-21.
    I present an approach to our conceiving absolute impossibilities—things which obtain at no possible world—in terms of ceteris paribus intentional operators: variably restricted quantifiers on possible and impossible worlds based on world similarity. The explicit content of a representation plays a role similar in some respects to the one of a ceteris paribus conditional antecedent. I discuss how such operators invalidate logical closure for conceivability, and how similarity works when impossible worlds are around. Unlike what happens with ceteris paribus counterfactual (...)
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  38. Conceivability and Possibility: Some Dilemmas for Humeans.Francesco Berto & Tom Schoonen - forthcoming - Synthese:1-19.
    The Humean view that conceivability entails possibility can be criticized via input from cognitive psychology. A mainstream view here has it that there are two candidate codings for mental representations (one of them being, according to some, reducible to the other): the linguistic and the pictorial, the difference between the two consisting in the degree of arbitrariness of the representation relation. If the conceivability of P at issue for Humeans involves the having of a linguistic mental representation, then it is (...)
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  39. Why Thought Experiments Are Not Arguments.Michael A. Bishop - 1999 - Philosophy of Science 66 (4):534-541.
    Are thought experiments nothing but arguments? I argue that it is not possible to make sense of the historical trajectory of certain thought experiments if one takes them to be arguments. Einstein and Bohr disagreed about the outcome of the clock-in-the-box thought experiment, and so they reconstructed it using different arguments. This is to be expected whenever scientists disagree about a thought experiment's outcome. Since any such episode consists of two arguments but just one thought experiment, the thought experiment cannot (...)
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  40. Rethinking Thought Experiments.Alisa Bokulich - 2001 - Perspectives on Science 9 (3):285-307.
    : An examination of two thought experiments in contemporary physics reveals that the same thought experiment can be reanalyzed from the perspective of different and incompatible theories. This fact undermines those accounts of thought experiments that claim their justificatory power comes from their ability to reveal the laws of nature. While thought experiments do play a genuine evaluative role in science, they do so by testing the nonempirical virtues of a theory, such as consistency and explanatory power. I conclude that, (...)
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  41. On a Unified Theory of Models and Thought Experiments in Natural Sciences.Giovanni Boniolo - 1997 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 11 (2):121 – 142.
    In this paper a unified theory of models and thought experiments is proposed by considering them as fictions, la Vaihinger. In order to reach this aim, the Hertzian and Botzmannian interpretation of theories as Bilder is reconsidered.
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  42. Functional Thought Experiments.Borsboom Denny, J. Mellenbergh Gideon & Heerden Jaap Van - 2002 - Synthese 130 (3):379 - 387.
    The literature on thought experiments has been mainly concerned with thought experiments that are directed at a theory, be it in a constructive or a destructive manner. This has led some philosophers to argue that all thought experiments can be formulated as arguments. The aim of this paper is to draw attention to a type of thought experiment that is not directed at a theory, but fulfills a specific function within a theory. Such thought experiments are referred to as functional (...)
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  43. À L’Épreuve de L’Altérité Radicale: Une Expérience de Pensée.Benjamin Boudou - 2016 - le Philosophoire 46:199-220.
    Ce texte propose de prendre au sérieux l’expérience de pensée d’une rencontre extraterrestre, pour poser à la philosophie politique et morale le défi d’une rencontre de l’altérité radicale. En se demandant comment accueillir des non-humains non-terriens, cet article argumente en faveur d’une politique de l’hospitalité, comme alternative aux propositions posthumanistes souvent trop abstraites. L’hospitalité offre une série d’épreuves qui permettent de déterminer la nature d’entités inconnues et d’affuter notre sensibilité à leur égard. Le détour par la science-fiction permet ainsi de (...)
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  44. Experiments in Living.Richard B. Brandt & A. MacBeath - 1953 - Philosophical Review 62 (3):432.
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  45. Intuition Pumps and the Proper Use of Thought Experiments.Elke Brendel - 2004 - Dialectica 58 (1):89–108.
    I begin with an explication of "thought experiment". I then clarify the role that intuitions play in thought experiments by addressing two important issues: (1) the informativeness of thought experiments and (2) the legitimacy of the method of thought experiments in philosophy and the natural sciences. I defend a naturalistic account of intuitions that provides a plausible explanation of the informativeness of thought experiments, which, in turn, allows thought experiments to be reconstructed as arguments. I also specify criteria for distinguishing (...)
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  46. Intuition Pumps and the Proper Use of Thought Experiments.Elke Brendel - 2004 - Dialectica 28 (1):89-108.
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  47. The Method of Thought Experiment.D. H. M. Brooks - 1994 - Metaphilosophy 25 (1):71-83.
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  48. Explaining, Seeing, and Understanding in Thought Experiments.James Robert Brown - 2014 - Perspectives on Science 22 (3):357-376.
    Theories often run into paradoxes. Some of these are outright contradictions, sending the would-be champions of the theory back to the drawing board. Others are paradoxical in the sense of being bizarre and unexpected. The latter are sometimes mistakenly thought to be instances of the former. That is, they are thought to be more than merely weird; they are mistakenly thought to be self-refuting. Showing that they are not self-contradictory but merely a surprise is often a challenge. Notions of explanation (...)
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  49. The Laboratory of the Mind: Thought Experiments in the Natural Sciences.James Robert Brown - 2010 - Routledge.
    Newton's bucket, Einstein's elevator, Schrödinger's cat – these are some of the best-known examples of thought experiments in the natural sciences. But what function do these experiments perform? Are they really experiments at all? Can they help us gain a greater understanding of the natural world? How is it possible that we can learn new things just by thinking? In this revised and updated new edition of his classic text _The Laboratory of the Mind_, James Robert Brown continues to defend (...)
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  50. Thought Experiments in Science, Philosophy, and Mathematics.James Robert Brown - 2007 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 7 (1):3-27.
    Most disciplines make use of thought experiments, but physics and philosophy lead the pack with heavy dependence upon them. Often this is for conceptual clarification, but occasionally they provide real theoretical advances. In spite of their importance, however, thought experiments have received rather little attention as a topic in their own right until recently. The situation has improved in the past few years, but a mere generation ago the entire published literature on thought experiments could have been mastered in a (...)
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