In defense of psychological laws

Authors
Martin Carrier
Bielefeld University
Abstract
Abstract It is argued that psychological explanations involve psychological generalizations that exhibit the same features as laws of physics. On the basis of the ?systematic theory of lawhood?, characteristic features of laws of nature are elaborated. Investigating some examples of explanations taken from cognitive psychology shows that these features can also be identified in psychological generalizations. Particular attention is devoted to the notion of ?ccteris?paribus laws?. It is argued that laws of psychology are indeed ceteris?paribus laws. However, this feature does not distinguish them from the laws of physics, because such laws are found in physics as well. Moreover, the laws invoked in psychological explanations are genuine laws of psychology; they are not laws of other disciplines that are brought to bear on psychological problems. The conclusion is that if there are laws of physics then laws of psychology exist as well
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/02698599808573597
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 38,086
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Counterfactuals.David K. Lewis - 1973 - Blackwell.
What is a Law of Nature?D. M. Armstrong - 1983 - Cambridge University Press.
Special Sciences.Jerry A. Fodor - 1974 - Synthese 28 (2):97-115.
Laws of Nature.Fred I. Dretske - 1977 - Philosophy of Science 44 (2):248-268.

View all 16 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Manipulationism, Ceteris Paribus Laws, and the Bugbear of Background Knowledge.Robert Kowalenko - 2017 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 31 (3):261-283.
Evolutionary Contingency, Stability, and Biological Laws.Jani Raerinne - 2015 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 46 (1):45-62.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

All Else Being Equal.Peter Lipton - 1999 - Philosophy 74 (2):155-168.
Ceteris Paribus Laws.Alexander Reutlinger, Gerhard Schurz & Andreas Hüttemann - 2015 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Psychological Laws (Revisited).Mark Bauer - 2010 - Erkenntnis 73 (1):41 - 53.
Anomalous Monism, Ceteris Paribus, and Psychological Explanation.Robert Klee - 1992 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 43 (3):389-403.
Horgan and Tienson on Ceteris Paribus Laws.Marcello Guarini - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (2):301-315.
Psychological Laws.William G. Lycan - 1981 - Philosophical Topics 12 (3):9-38.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-02-01

Total views
143 ( #44,906 of 2,313,336 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #269,139 of 2,313,336 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature