Inference to the Best Explanation and van Fraassen’s Contextual Theory of Explanation: Reply to Park

Axiomathes 32 (2):355-365 (2021)
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Seungbae Park argues that Bas van Fraassen’s rejection of inference to the best explanation (IBE) is problematic for his contextual theory of explanation because van Fraassen uses IBE to support the contextual theory. This paper provides a defense of van Fraassen’s views from Park’s objections. I point out three weaknesses of Park’s objection against van Fraassen. First, van Fraassen may be perfectly content to accept the implications that Park claims to follow from his views. Second, even if van Fraassen rejects IBE he may still endorse particular arguments that instantiate IBE. Third, van Fraassen does not, in fact, use IBE to support his contextual theory.

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Author's Profile

Yunus Prasetya
Yale-NUS College

References found in this work

Laws and symmetry.Bas C. Van Fraassen - 1989 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Knowledge in a social world.Alvin I. Goldman - 1999 - New York: Oxford University Press.
The scientific image.C. Van Fraassen Bas - 1980 - New York: Oxford University Press.
The Scientific Image.William Demopoulos & Bas C. van Fraassen - 1982 - Philosophical Review 91 (4):603.

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