Laws and lawmakers: Science, metaphysics and the laws of nature * by Marc Lange

Analysis 71 (3):599-601 (2011)
Marc Lange’s new book on laws offers a restatement and development of the account he proposed in Natural Laws and Scientific Practice (Oxford University Press, 2000), henceforth NLSP, and the new material is helpfully summarized in the preface. Laws and Lawmakers presents the key idea from NLSP in a rather more reader-friendly manner – this idea being roughly that the difference between laws and accidents is that laws, unlike accidents, form a ‘stable’ set, i.e. a logically closed set of truths such that they would all still hold under any counterfactual supposition consistent with the set. So, for example, the natural laws all still hold under counterfactual suppositions such as ‘had this match been struck …’, ‘had Bill Gates wanted to build a gold cube one mile across’ and so on; thus this set is stable. But the set of laws plus the accidental claim ‘there is no gold cube one mile across’ fails to hold under such counterfactual suppositions because had Bill Gates wanted to build a gold cube one mile across, such a cube might well have come into existence; thus this set is not stable. While the basic outline and defence of this idea is provided in Chapter 1, those wishing to delve into the intricate …
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1093/analys/anr057
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 28,071
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Why Are the Laws of Nature so Important to Science?Marc Lange - 1999 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (3):625-652.
Laws and Lawmakers: Science, Metaphysics, and the Laws of Nature. [REVIEW]Barry Ward - 2012 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 43 (2):155-158.
Laws and Their Stability.Marc Lange - 2005 - Synthese 144 (3):415Ð432.
Natural Laws in Scientific Practice.Marc Lange - 2000 - Oxford University Press.
Laws, Counterfactuals, Stability, and Degrees of Lawhood.Marc Lange - 1999 - Philosophy of Science 66 (2):243-267.
Lange's Challenge: Accounting for Meta-Laws.Z. Yudell - 2013 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 64 (2):347-369.
A Note on Scientific Essentialism, Laws of Nature, and Counterfactual Conditionals.Marc Lange - 2004 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (2):227 – 241.
Laws and Meta-Laws of Nature: Conservation Laws and Symmetries.Marc Lange - 2007 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 38 (3):457-481.
Lange and Laws, Kinds, and Counterfactuals.Alexander Bird - 2011 - In Joseph Keim Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & Matthew H. Slater (eds.), Carving Nature at its Joints. MIT Press.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

208 ( #19,281 of 2,171,693 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #326,424 of 2,171,693 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums