Why the ultimate argument for scientific realism ultimately fails

Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 43 (1):132-138 (2012)
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Abstract

In this paper, I argue that the ultimate argument for Scientific Realism, also known as the No-Miracles Argument (NMA), ultimately fails as an abductive defence of Epistemic Scientific Realism (ESR), where (ESR) is the thesis that successful theories of mature sciences are approximately true. The NMA is supposed to be an Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE) that purports to explain the success of science. However, the explanation offered as the best explanation for success, namely (ESR), fails to yield independently testable predictions that alternative explanations for success do not yield. If this is correct, then there seems to be no good reason to prefer (ESR) over alternative explanations for success.

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Moti Mizrahi
Florida Institute of Technology

Citations of this work

Truth-Seeking by Abduction.Ilkka Niiniluoto - 2018 - Cham, Switzerland: Springer.
Historical Inductions: New Cherries, Same Old Cherry-picking.Moti Mizrahi - 2015 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 29 (2):129-148.
Realism Versus Surrealism.Seungbae Park - 2016 - Foundations of Science 21 (4):603-614.

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References found in this work

The Scientific Image.William Demopoulos & Bas C. van Fraassen - 1982 - Philosophical Review 91 (4):603.
Inference to the Best Explanation.Peter Lipton - 1991 - London and New York: Routledge.
The Scientific Image.Michael Friedman - 1982 - Journal of Philosophy 79 (5):274-283.

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