Kitcher and the obsessive unifier

Abstract
Philip Kitcher's account of scientific progress incorporates a conception of explanatory unification that invites the so-called 'obsessive unifier' worry, to wit, that in our drive to unify the phenomena we might impose artificial structure on the world and consequently produce an incorrect view of how things, in fact, are. I argue that Kitcher's attempt to address this worry is unsatisfactory because it relies on an ability to choose between rival patterns of explanation which itself rests on the relevant choice having already been made. I also suggest a way of answering the worry that Kitcher is not likely to endorse.
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy of Mind
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ISBN(s) 0031-8205
DOI 10.1111/j.1933-1592.2008.00200.x
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References found in this work BETA
A Confutation of Convergent Realism.Larry Laudan - 1981 - Philosophy of Science 48 (1):19-49.
Explanatory Unification.Philip Kitcher - 1981 - Philosophy of Science 48 (4):507-531.
The Naturalists Return.Philip Kitcher - 1992 - Philosophical Review 101 (1):53-114.

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Citations of this work BETA
Scientific Explanation and Understanding: Unificationism Reconsidered.Sorin Bangu - 2017 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 7 (1):103-126.
A Euthyphronic Problem for Kitcher's Epistemology of Science.Jeffrey W. Roland - 2009 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 47 (2):205-223.

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