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Matthew C. Haug [13]Matthew Haug [5]
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Matthew Haug
College of William and Mary
  1.  66
    Naturalistic Metaphysics at Sea.Matthew Haug - 2018 - Philosophical Inquiries 6 (1):95-122.
    In this paper I return to the mid-20th-century debate between Quine and Carnap on the status of metaphysics questions with an eye toward advancing contemporary debates about whether naturalists can coherently undertake substantive metaphysical inquiry. Following Huw Price, I take the debate between Quine and Carnap to hinge, in part, on whether human inquiry is functionally unified. However, unlike Price, I suggest that this question is not best understood as a question about the function(s) of descriptive discourse. This goes along (...)
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  2. Must Naturalism Lead to a Deflationary Meta-Ontology?Matthew Haug - 2014 - Metaphysica 15 (2):347-367.
    Huw Price has argued that naturalistic philosophy inevitably leads to a deflationary approach to ontological questions. In this paper, I rebut these arguments. A more substantive, less language-focused approach to metaphysics remains open to naturalists. However, rebutting one of Price’s main arguments requires rejecting Quine’s criterion of ontological commitment. So, even though Price’s argument is unsound, it reveals that naturalists cannot rest content with broadly Quinean, “mainstream metaphysics,” which, I suggest, naturalists also have independent reasons to reject.
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  3. Philosophical Methodology: The Armchair or the Laboratory?Matthew C. Haug (ed.) - 2013 - Routledge.
    What methodology should philosophers follow? Should they rely on methods that can be conducted from the armchair? Or should they leave the armchair and turn to the methods of the natural sciences, such as experiments in the laboratory? Or is this opposition itself a false one? Arguments about philosophical methodology are raging in the wake of a number of often conflicting currents, such as the growth of experimental philosophy, the resurgence of interest in metaphysical questions, and the use of formal (...)
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  4. Realization, Determination, and Mechanisms.Matthew C. Haug - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 150 (3):313-330.
    Several philosophers (e.g., Ehring (Nous (Detroit, Mich.) 30:461–480, 1996 ); Funkhouser (Nous (Detroit, Mich.) 40:548–569, 2006 ); Walter (Canadian Journal of Philosophy 37:217–244, 2007 ) have argued that there are metaphysical differences between the determinable-determinate relation and the realization relation between mental and physical properties. Others have challenged this claim (e.g., Wilson (Philosophical Studies, 2009 ). In this paper, I argue that there are indeed such differences and propose a “mechanistic” account of realization that elucidates why these differences hold. This (...)
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  5. Emergence in Mind * Edited by Cynthia MacDonald and Graham MacDonald. [REVIEW]Matthew C. Haug - 2011 - Analysis 71 (4):783-785.
  6. Natural Properties and the Special Sciences: Nonreductive Physicalism Without Levels of Reality or Multiple Realizability.Matthew C. Haug - 2011 - The Monist 94 (2):244-266.
    In this paper, I investigate how different views about the vertical and horizontal structure of reality affect the debate between reductive and nonreductive physicalism. This debate is commonly assumed to hinge on whether there are high-level, special-science properties that are distinct from low-level physical properties and whether the alleged multiple realizability of high-level properties establishes this. I defend a metaphysical interpretation of nonreductive physicalismin the absence of both of these assumptions. Adopting an independently motivated, discipline-relative account of natural properties and (...)
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  7.  74
    Abstraction and Explanatory Relevance, or Why Do the Special Sciences Exist?Matthew C. Haug - 2011 - Philosophy of Science 78 (5):1143-1155.
    Non-reductive physicalists have long held that the special sciences offer explanations of some phenomena that are objectively superior to physical explanations. This explanatory “autonomy” has largely been based on the multiple realizability argument. Recently, in the face of the local reduction and disjunctive property responses to multiple realizability, some defenders of non-reductive physicalism have suggested that autonomy can be grounded merely in human cognitive limitations. In this paper, I argue that this is mistaken. By distinguishing between two kinds of abstraction (...)
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  8. The Exclusion Problem Meets the Problem of Many Causes.Matthew C. Haug - 2010 - Erkenntnis 73 (1):55-65.
    In this paper I develop a novel response to the exclusion problem. I argue that the nature of the events in the causally complete physical domain raises the “problem of many causes”: there will typically be countless simultaneous low-level physical events in that domain that are causally sufficient for any given high-level physical event. This shows that even reductive physicalists must admit that the version of the exclusion principle used to pose the exclusion problem against non-reductive physicalism is too strong. (...)
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  9. Two Kinds of Completeness and the Uses (and Abuses) of Exclusion Principles.Matthew C. Haug - 2009 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 47 (4):379-401.
    I argue that the completeness of physics is composed of two distinct claims. The first is the commonly made claim that, roughly, every physical event is completely causally determined by physical events. The second has rarely, if ever, been explicitly stated in the literature and is the claim that microphysics provides a complete inventory of the fundamental categories that constitute both the causal features and intrinsic nature of all the events that causally affect the physical universe. After showing that these (...)
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  10.  67
    Of Mice and Metaphysics: Natural Selection and Realized Population‐Level Properties.Matthew C. Haug - 2007 - Philosophy of Science 74 (4):431-451.
    In this paper, I answer a fundamental question facing any view according to which natural selection is a population‐level causal process—namely, how is the causal process of natural selection related to, yet not preempted by, causal processes that occur at the level of individual organisms? Without an answer to this grounding question, the population‐level causal view appears unstable—collapsing into either an individual‐level causal interpretation or the claim that selection is a purely formal, statistical phenomenon. I argue that a causal account (...)
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  11.  39
    No Microphysical Causation? No Problem: Selective Causal Skepticism and the Structure of Completeness-Based Arguments for Physicalism.Matthew C. Haug - forthcoming - Synthese:1-22.
    A number of philosophers have argued that causation is not an objective feature of the microphysical world but rather is a perspectival phenomenon that holds only between “coarse-grained” entities such as those that figure in the special sciences. This view seems to pose a problem for arguments for physicalism that rely on the alleged causal completeness of physics. In this paper, I address this problem by arguing that the completeness of physics has two components, only one of which is causal. (...)
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  12.  48
    Review of The Oxford Handbook of Philosophical Methodology. [REVIEW]Matthew Haug - 2017 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 16.
    This is a review of The Oxford Handbook of Philosophical Methodology, edited by Herman Cappelen, Tamar Szabó Gendler, and John Hawthorne.
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  13.  7
    Abstraction, Multiple Realizability, and the Explanatory Value of Omitting Irrelevant Details.Matthew C. Haug - manuscript
    Anti-reductionists hold that special science explanations of some phenomena are objectively better than physical explanations of those phenomena. Prominent defenses of this claim appeal to the multiple realizability of special science properties. I argue that special science explanations can be shown to be better, in one respect, than physical explanations in a way that does not depend on multiple realizability. Namely, I discuss a way in which a special science explanation may be more abstract than a competing physical explanation, even (...)
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  14. On the Prospects for Ontology: Deflationism, Pluralism, and Carnap's Principle of Tolerance.Matthew C. Haug - 2014 - European Journal of Philosophy 22 (4):593-616.
    In this paper, I critically discuss recent work on the role that the principle of tolerance plays in Rudolf Carnap's philosophy. Specifically, I consider how two prominent interpretations of Carnap's principle of tolerance can be used to argue for Carnap's anti-metaphysical views. I then argue that there are serious problems with these arguments, and I diagnose those problems as resulting, in part, from a tension between competing goals of Carnap's philosophical project.
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  15. On the Distinction Between Reductive and Nonreductive Physicalism.Matthew C. Haug - 2011 - Metaphilosophy 42 (4):451-469.
    Abtract: This article argues that the debate between reductive and nonreductive physicalists is best characterized as a disagreement about which properties are natural. Among other things, natural properties are those that characterize the world completely. All physicalists accept the “completeness of physics,” but this claim contains a subtle ambiguity, which results in two conceptions of natural properties. Reductive physicalists should assert, while nonreductive physicalists should deny, that a single set of low-level physical properties is natural in both of these senses. (...)
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  16. Explaining the Placebo Effect: Aliefs, Beliefs, and Conditioning.Matthew Haug - 2011 - Philosophical Psychology 24 (5):679-698.
    There are a number of competing psychological accounts of the placebo effect, and much of the recent debate centers on the relative importance of classical conditioning and conscious beliefs. In this paper, I discuss apparent problems with these accounts and with?disjunctive? accounts that deny that placebo effects can be given a unified psychological explanation. The fact that some placebo effects seem to be mediated by cognitive states with content that is consciously inaccessible and inferentially isolated from a subject's beliefs motivates (...)
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  17.  8
    Fast, Cheap, and Unethical? The Interplay of Morality and Methodology in Crowdsourced Survey Research.Matthew Haug - 2018 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 9 (2):363-379.
    Crowdsourcing is an increasingly popular method for researchers in the social and behavioral sciences, including experimental philosophy, to recruit survey respondents. Crowdsourcing platforms, such as Amazon’s Mechanical Turk, have been seen as a way to produce high quality survey data both quickly and cheaply. However, in the last few years, a number of authors have claimed that the low pay rates on MTurk are morally unacceptable. In this paper, I explore some of the methodological implications for online experimental philosophy research (...)
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  18.  30
    Thought Experiments in Philosophy, Science and the Arts By Mélanie Frappier, Letitia Meynell and James Robert Brown. [REVIEW]Matthew C. Haug - 2014 - Analysis 74 (1):167-169.
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