In Kevin McCain & Ted Poston (eds.), Best explanations: New essays on inference to the best explanation. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 219-241 (2017)

William Roche
Texas Christian University
Hempel’s Converse Consequence Condition (CCC), Entailment Condition (EC), and Special Consequence Condition (SCC) have some prima facie plausibility when taken individually. Hempel, though, shows that they have no plausibility when taken together, for together they entail that E confirms H for any propositions E and H. This is “Hempel’s paradox”. It turns out that Hempel’s argument would fail if one or more of CCC, EC, and SCC were modified in terms of explanation. This opens up the possibility that Hempel’s paradox can be solved by modifying one or more of CCC, EC, and SCC in terms of explanation. I explore this possibility by modifying CCC and SCC in terms of explanation and considering whether CCC and SCC so modified are correct. I also relate that possibility to Inference to the Best Explanation.
Keywords Bayesian causal networks  confirmation  Converse Consequence Condition  explanation  Hempel  Hempel's paradox  Inference to the Best Explanation  screening-off  Special Consequence Condition
Categories (categorize this paper)
Buy the book Find it on
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Laws and Symmetry.Bas C. van Fraassen - 1989 - Oxford University Press.
Causality and Explanation.Wesley C. Salmon - 1997 - Oxford University Press.
Ockham’s Razors: A User’s Manual.Elliott Sober - 2015 - Cambridge University Press.
Inference to the Best Explanation.Peter Lipton - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (2):421-423.

View all 53 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Paradox of Confirmation.Branden Fitelson - 2006 - Philosophy Compass 1 (1):95–113.
Queries on Hempel’s Solution to the Paradoxes of Confirmation.Dun Xinguo - 2007 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 2 (1):131-139.
On the Equivalence of Goodman’s and Hempel’s Paradoxes.Kenneth Boyce - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 45:32-42.
Does the Bayesian Solution to the Paradox of Confirmation Really Support Bayesianism?Brian Laetz - 2011 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 1 (1):39-46.
The Converse-Consequence Condition.Peter Hutcheson - 1981 - Southwest Philosophical Studies 6.
On the Confirmation of Explanation in History.David Stern Levin - 1980 - Dissertation, Cornell University
Theories and the Transitivity of Confirmation.Mary Hesse - 1970 - Philosophy of Science 37 (1):50-63.
Goodman, 'Grue' and Hempel.C. A. Hooker - 1968 - Philosophy of Science 35 (3):232-247.
Explanation Revisited.David Kaplan - 1961 - Philosophy of Science 28 (4):429-436.
A Neglected Response to the Paradoxes of Confirmation.Murali Ramachandran - 2017 - South African Journal of Philosophy 36 (2):179-85.


Added to PP index

Total views
261 ( #35,950 of 2,444,728 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
30 ( #25,125 of 2,444,728 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes