Philosophical Studies:1-18 (forthcoming)

Sam Baron
Australian Catholic University
Mark Colyvan
University of Sydney
We argue that explanations appealing to logical impossibilities are genuine explanations. Our defense is based on a certain picture of impossibility. Namely, that there are impossibilities and that the impossibilities have structure. Assuming this broad picture of impossibility we defend the genuineness of explanations that appeal to logical impossibilities against three objections. First, that such explanations are at odds with the perceived conceptual connection between explanation and counterfactual dependence. Second, that there are no genuinely contrastive why-questions that involve logical impossibilities and, third, that explanations appealing to logical impossibilities rule nothing out.
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DOI 10.1007/s11098-020-01445-8
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References found in this work BETA

Causation.David K. Lewis - 1973 - Journal of Philosophy 70 (17):556-567.
Remarks on Counterpossibles.Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno - 2013 - Synthese 190 (4):639-660.
Omission Impossible.Sara Bernstein - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (10):2575-2589.
Impossible Worlds: A Modest Approach.Daniel Nolan - 1997 - Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 38 (4):535-572.

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