Philosophy of Science 65 (1):121-135 (1998)
Laws are supposed to tell us how physical systems actually behave. The analysis of an important part of physical practice--abstraction--shows, however, that laws describe the behavior of physical systems under very special circumstances, namely when they are isolated. Nevertheless, laws are applied in cases of non-isolation as well. This practice requires an explanation. It is argued that one has to assume that physical systems have dispositions. I take these to be innocuous from an empiricist's standpoint because they can--at least in principle--be measured. Laws can be applied whenever such a disposition is present, they describe how the physical system would behave if the disposition were manifest.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
GRW as an Ontology of Dispositions.Mauro Dorato & Michael Esfeld - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 41 (1):41-49.
Better Best Systems – Too Good To Be True.Marius Backmann & Alexander Reutlinger - 2014 - Dialectica 68 (3):375-390.
Thinking About Non-Universal Laws.Alexander Reutlinger & Matthias Unterhuber - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (10):1703-1713.
Similar books and articles
Anomalous Monism, Ceteris Paribus, and Psychological Explanation.Robert Klee - 1992 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 43 (3):389-403.
Structural Analogies Between Physical Systems.Peter Kroes - 1989 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 40 (2):145-154.
Ceteris Paribus Laws: Classification and Deconstruction. [REVIEW]Gerhard Schurz - 2002 - Erkenntnis 57 (3):351Ð372.
Horgan and Tienson on Ceteris Paribus Laws.Marcello Guarini - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (2):301-315.
Mathematical Biology and the Existence of Biological Laws.Mauro Dorato - 2012 - In D. Dieks, S. Hartmann, T. Uebel & M. Weber (eds.), Probabilities, Laws and Structure. Springer.
Dispositions and Ceteris Paribus Laws.Alice Drewery - 2001 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 52 (4):723-733.
Causation, Laws and Dispositions.Andreas Hüttemann - 2007 - In Max Kistler & Bruno Gnassounou (eds.), Dispositions and Causal Powers. Ashgate.
Can Capacities Rescue Us From Ceteris Paribus Laws?Markus Schrenk - 2007 - In B. Gnassounou & M. Kistler (eds.), Dispositions in Philosophy and Science. Ashgate.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads161 ( #29,284 of 2,178,151 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #316,504 of 2,178,151 )
How can I increase my downloads?