Models and fiction

Synthese 172 (2):251-268 (2010)
Authors
Roman Frigg
London School of Economics
Abstract
Most scientific models are not physical objects, and this raises important questions. What sort of entity are models, what is truth in a model, and how do we learn about models? In this paper I argue that models share important aspects in common with literary fiction, and that therefore theories of fiction can be brought to bear on these questions. In particular, I argue that the pretence theory as developed by Walton has the resources to answer these questions. I introduce this account, outline the answers that it offers, and develop a general picture of scientific modelling based on it
Keywords Philosophy   Metaphysics   Philosophy of Language   Logic   Epistemology   Computer Science, general   Philosophy of Science
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Reprint years 2007, 2010
DOI 10.1007/s11229-009-9505-0
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References found in this work BETA

How the Laws of Physics Lie.Nancy Cartwright - 1983 - Oxford University Press.
Explaining Science: A Cognitive Approach.Ronald N. Giere - 1988 - Philosophical Review 100 (4):653-656.
On Denoting.Bertrand Russell - 2005 - Mind 114 (456):873 - 887.

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Citations of this work BETA

Models and Fictions in Science.Peter Godfrey-Smith - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 143 (1):101 - 116.
Modeling Without Models.Arnon Levy - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (3):781-798.
Realism and its Representational Vehicles.Steven French - 2017 - Synthese 194 (9):3311-3326.

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