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Richard Boyd (1980). Scientific Realism and Naturalistic Epistemology.

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  1.  6
    No Purely Epistemic Theory Can Account for the Naturalness of Kinds.Olivier Lemeire - forthcoming - Synthese:1-19.
    Several philosophers have recently tried to define natural kinds in epistemic terms only. Given the persistent problems with finding a successful metaphysical theory, these philosophers argue that we would do better to describe natural kinds solely in terms of their epistemic usefulness, such as their role in supporting inductive inferences. In this paper, I argue against these epistemology-only theories of natural kinds and in favor of, at least partly, metaphysical theories. I do so in three steps. In the first section (...)
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  2.  17
    One’s an Illusion: Organisms, Reference, and Non-Eliminative Nihilism.Joseph Long - forthcoming - Philosophia:1-17.
    Gabriele Contessa has recently introduced and defended a view he calls ‘non-eliminative nihilism’. Non-eliminative nihilism is the conjunction of mereological nihilism and non-eliminativism about ordinary objects. Mereological nihilism is the thesis that composite objects do not exist, where something is a composite object just in case it has proper parts. Eliminativism about ordinary objects denies that ordinary objects exist. Eliminativism thus implies, for example, that there are no galaxies, planets, stars, ships, tables, books, organisms, cells, molecules, or atoms. Non-eliminativism is (...)
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  3.  30
    The Genealogical Method in Epistemology.Martin Kusch & Robin McKenna - 2018 - Synthese.
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  4.  37
    Normative Reference Magnets.J. Robert G. Williams - 2018 - Philosophical Review 127 (1):41-71.
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  5.  8
    Defending Scientific Realism Without Relying on Inference to the Best Explanation.Michel Ghins - 2017 - Axiomathes 27 (6):635-651.
    Explanationist strategies for defending epistemological scientific realism make heavy use of a particular version of inference to the best explanation known as the no-miracle argument. I consider ESR to be a genuinely philosophical—non-naturalistic—thesis which contends that there are strong arguments to believe in some non-observational claims made by scientific theories that are partially observationally correct. In this paper, I examine the grounds of the strength of these arguments from what I call a contemplative perspective which focuses on the end products, (...)
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  6.  70
    Two Cornell Realisms: Moral and Scientific.Elliott Sober - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (4):905-924.
    Richard Boyd and Nicholas Sturgeon develop distinctive naturalistic arguments for scientific realism and moral realism. Each defends a realist position by an inference to the best explanation. In this paper, I suggest that these arguments for realism should be reformulated, with the law of likelihood replacing inference to the best explanation. The resulting arguments for realism do not work.
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  7.  48
    Best Theory Scientific Realism.Gerald Doppelt - 2014 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 4 (2):271-291.
    The aim of this essay is to argue for a new version of ‘inference-to-the-best-explanation’ scientific realism, which I characterize as Best Theory Realism or ‘BTR’. On BTR, the realist needs only to embrace a commitment to the truth or approximate truth of the best theories in a field, those which are unique in satisfying the highest standards of empirical success in a mature field with many successful but falsified predecessors. I argue that taking our best theories to be true is (...)
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  8.  90
    In Defence of Cornell Realism: A Reply to Elizabeth Tropman.Joseph Long - 2014 - Theoria 80 (2):174-183.
    Cornell realists claim, among other things, that moral knowledge can be acquired in the same basic way that scientific knowledge is acquired. Recently in this journal Elizabeth Tropman has presented two arguments against this claim. In the present article, I attempt to show that the first argument attacks a straw man and the second mischaracterizes the Cornell realists' epistemology and ends up begging the question. I close by suggesting that, given Tropman's own apparent views, her objections are also probably misplaced.
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  9. What Elements of Successful Scientific Theories Are the Correct Targets for “Selective” Scientific Realism?Dean Peters - 2014 - Philosophy of Science 81 (3):377-397.
    Selective scientific realists disagree on which theoretical posits should be regarded as essential to the empirical success of a scientific theory. A satisfactory account of essentialness will show that the (approximate) truth of the selected posits adequately explains the success of the theory. Therefore, (a) the essential elements must be discernible prospectively; (b) there cannot be a priori criteria regarding which type of posit is essential; and (c) the overall success of a theory, or ‘cluster’ of propositions, not only individual (...)
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  10.  24
    Normativity, the Base-Rate Fallacy, and Some Problems for Retail Realism.Paul Dicken - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 44 (4):563-570.
    Recent literature in the scientific realism debate has been concerned with a particular species of statistical fallacy concerning base-rates, and the worry that no matter how predictively successful our contemporary scientific theories may be, this will tell us absolutely nothing about the likelihood of their truth if our overall sample space contains enough empirically adequate theories that are nevertheless false. In response, both realists and anti-realists have switched their focus from general arguments concerning the reliability and historical track-records of our (...)
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  11.  49
    State of the Field: Why Novel Prediction Matters.Heather Douglas & P. Magnus - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 44 (4):580-589.
    There is considerable disagreement about the epistemic value of novel predictive success, i.e. when a scientist predicts an unexpected phenomenon, experiments are conducted, and the prediction proves to be accurate. We survey the field on this question, noting both fully articulated views such as weak and strong predictivism, and more nascent views, such as pluralist reasons for the instrumental value of prediction. By examining the various reasons offered for the value of prediction across a range of inferential contexts , we (...)
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  12.  28
    Limitations of Natural Kind Talk in the Life Sciences: Homology and Other Cases. [REVIEW]Miles MacLeod - 2013 - Biological Theory 7 (2):109-120.
    The aim of this article is to detail some reservations against the beliefs, claims, or presuppositions that current essentialist natural kind concepts (including homeostatic property cluster kinds) model grouping practices in the life sciences accurately and generally. Such concepts fit reasoning into particular preconceived epistemic and semantic patterns. The ability of these patterns to fit scientific practice is often argued in support of homeostatic property cluster accounts, yet there are reasons to think that in the life sciences kind concepts exhibit (...)
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  13. Beyond Structural Realism: Pluralist Criteria for Theory Evaluation.Mark Newman - 2010 - Synthese 174 (3):413-443.
    In this paper I argue that singularist approaches to solving the Pessimistic Induction, such as Structural Realism, are unacceptable, but that when a pluralist account of methodological principles is adopted this anti-realist argument can be dissolved. The proposed view is a contextual methodological pluralism in the tradition of Normative Naturalism, and is justified by appeal to meta-methodological principles that are themselves justified via an externalist epistemology. Not only does this view provide an answer to the Pessimistic Induction, it can also (...)
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  14. The No-Miracles Argument, Reliabilism, and a Methodological Version of the Generality Problem.Mark Newman - 2010 - Synthese 177 (1):111 - 138.
    The No-Miracles Argument (NMA) is often used to support scientific realism. We can formulate this argument as an inference to the best explanation this accusation of circularity by appealing to reliabilism, an externalist epistemology. In this paper I argue that this retreat fails. Reliabilism suffers from a potentially devastating difficulty known as the Generality Problem and attempts to solve this problem require adopting both epistemic and metaphysical assumptions regarding local scientific theories. Although the externalist can happily adopt the former, if (...)
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  15.  2
    Philosophical Skepticism Not Relativism is the Problem with the Strong Programme in Science Studies and with Educational Constructivism.Dimitris P. Papayannakos - 2008 - Science & Education 17 (6):573-611.
  16. What's New About the New Induction?P. D. Magnus - 2006 - Synthese 148 (2):295-301.
    The problem of underdetermination is thought to hold important lessons for philosophy of science. Yet, as Kyle Stanford has recently argued, typical treatments of it offer only restatements of familiar philosophical problems. Following suggestions in Duhem and Sklar, Stanford calls for a New Induction from the history of science. It will provide proof, he thinks, of "the kind of underdetermination that the history of science reveals to be a distinctive and genuine threat to even our best scientific theories" . This (...)
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  17.  51
    Measurement in Carnap's Late Philosophy of Science.Vadim Batitsky - 2000 - Dialectica 54 (2):87–108.
  18.  8
    Réalisme Et Fictionalisme Chez Claude Bernard.Luiz Henrique de A. Dutra - 1999 - Dialogue 38 (4):719-742.
  19.  9
    Réalisme Et Fictionalisme Chez Claude Bernard.Luiz Henrique A. Dutrdea - 1999 - Dialogue 38 (4):719-.
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  20.  25
    Naturalism Without Truth?S. Psillos - 1997 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 28 (4):699-713.
  21.  65
    A Philosophical Study of the Transition From the Caloric Theory of Heat to Thermodynamics: Resisting the Pessimistic Meta-Induction.Stathis Psillos - 1994 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 25 (2):159-190.
    I began this study with Laudan's argument from the pessimistic induction and I promised to show that the caloric theory of heat cannot be used to support the premisses of the meta-induction on past scientific theories. I tried to show that the laws of experimental calorimetry, adiabatic change and Carnot's theory of the motive power of heat were (i) independent of the assumption that heat is a material substance, (ii) approximately true, (iii) deducible and accounted for within thermodynamics. I stressed (...)
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  22.  86
    Why a Scientific Realist Cannot Be a Functionalist.Derk Pereboom - 1991 - Synthese 88 (September):341-58.
    According to functionalism, mental state types consist solely in relations to inputs, outputs, and other mental states. I argue that two central claims of a prominent and plausible type of scientific realism conflict with the functionalist position. These claims are that natural kinds in a mature science are not reducible to natural kinds in any other, and that all dispositional features of natural kinds can be explained at the type-level. These claims, when applied to psychology, have the consequence that at (...)
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  23.  27
    Neurath's Programme for Naturalistic Epistemology.Thomas E. Uebel - 1991 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 22 (4):623-646.
    I examine the thesis that Otto Neurath anticipated the programme of naturalised epistemology already at the time of the Vienna Circle and consider the relation between Neurath's proposals and those of two contemporary theorists whose research programmes he would thus have broadly anticipated. The thesis is confirmed by reference to Neurath's own writings. The connection between Neurath's programme and the programmes of his two successors considered here, however, is found to be highly indirect in one case and nonexistent in the (...)
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  24.  24
    Against Epistemological Relativism.Frans Gregersen & Simo Køppe - 1988 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 19 (4):447-487.
  25.  81
    Epistemology and the Theory of Problem Solving.Alvin I. Goldman - 1983 - Synthese 55 (1):21 - 48.
    Problem solving has recently become a central topic both in the philosophy of science and in cognitive science. This paper integrates approaches to problem solving from these two disciplines and discusses the epistemological consequences of such an integration. The paper first analyzes problem solving as getting a true answer to a question. It then explores some stages of cognitive activity relevant to question answering that have been delineated by historians and philosophers of science and by cognitive psychologists and artificial intelligencers. (...)
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