Laws and Counterfactuals: Defusing an Argument against the Humean View of Laws

Dialogue 50 (4):751-758 (2011)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

ABSTRACT: Appealing to the failure of counterfactual support is a standard device in refuting a Humean view on laws of nature: some true generalisations do not support relevant counterfactuals; therefore not every true general fact is a law of nature—so goes the refutation. I will argue that this strategy does not work, for our understanding of the truth-value of any counterfactual is grounded in our understanding of the lawhood of some statements related to it.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 89,703

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Popper on Laws and Counterfactuals.Danilo Šuster - 2005 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 5 (1):109-119.
Mind in a Humean World.Jens Harbecke - 2011 - Metaphysica 12 (2):213-229.
Causal Overdetermination for Humeans?Michael Esfeld - 2010 - Metaphysica 11 (2):99-104.
A note on scientific essentialism, laws of nature, and counterfactual conditionals.Marc Lange - 2004 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (2):227 – 241.
Humean supervenience and best-system laws.Lydia Jaeger - 2002 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 16 (2):141 – 155.
Why are the laws of nature so important to science?Marc Lange - 1999 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (3):625-652.
Laws and their stability.Marc Lange - 2005 - Synthese 144 (3):415Ð432.
The Law Governed Universe.John T. Roberts - 2008 - New York: Oxford University Press.
If I were a Dry Well-Made Match.Adam Morton - 1973 - Dialogue 12 (2):322-324.
Humean compatibilism.Helen Beebee & Alfred Mele - 2002 - Mind 111 (442):201-223.
Counterfactuals: The epistemic analysis.John-Michael Kuczynski - 2005 - Philosophia Scientiae 9 (1):83-126.

Analytics

Added to PP
2012-03-31

Downloads
257 (#69,779)

6 months
1 (#1,017,540)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

References found in this work

Fact, Fiction, and Forecast.Nelson Goodman - 1973 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
What is a Law of Nature?D. M. Armstrong - 1983 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Sydney Shoemaker.
Mental Events.Donald Davidson - 1970 - In L. Foster & J. W. Swanson (eds.), Experience and Theory. Clarendon Press. pp. 207-224.

View all 18 references / Add more references