113 found
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  1. The Nature of Explanation.Peter Achinstein - 1983 - Oxford University Press.
    Offering a new approach to scientific explanation, this book focuses initially on the explaining act itself.
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  2. The Book of Evidence.Peter Achinstein - 2001 - Oxford University Press.
    What is required for something to be evidence for a hypothesis? In this fascinating, elegantly written work, distinguished philosopher of science Peter Achinstein explores this question, rejecting typical philosophical and statistical theories of evidence. He claims these theories are much too weak to give scientists what they want--a good reason to believe--and, in some cases, they furnish concepts that mistakenly make all evidential claims a priori. Achinstein introduces four concepts of evidence, defines three of them by reference to "potential" evidence, (...)
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  3.  62
    Concepts of Science: A Philosophical Analysis.Peter Achinstein - 1968 - Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
  4.  28
    The Foundations of Scientific Inference. [REVIEW]Peter Achinstein - 1969 - Philosophical Review 78 (4):531.
  5. Concepts of Evidence.Peter Achinstein - 1978 - Mind 87 (345):22-45.
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  6. Is There a Valid Experimental Argument for Scientific Realism?Peter Achinstein - 2002 - Journal of Philosophy 99 (9):470-495.
  7. Hypotheses, Probability, and Waves.Peter Achinstein - 1990 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 41 (1):73-102.
  8.  32
    Is There a Valid Experimental Argument for Scientific Realism?Peter Achinstein - 2002 - Journal of Philosophy 99 (9):470.
  9. The Concept of Evidence.Peter Achinstein (ed.) - 1983 - Oxford University Press.
     
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  10. Evidence, Explanation, and Realism: Essays in the Philosophy of Science.Peter Achinstein - 2010 - Oxford University Press.
    The essays in this volume address three fundamental questions in the philosophy of science: What is required for some fact to be evidence for a scientific ...
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  11.  43
    Particles and Waves: Historical Essays in the Philosophy of Science.Peter Achinstein - 1991 - Oxford University Press.
    This volume brings together eleven essays by the distinguished philosopher of science, Peter Achinstein. The unifying theme is the nature of the philosophical problems surrounding the postulation of unobservable entities such as light waves, molecules, and electrons. How, if at all, is it possible to confirm scientific hypotheses about "unobservables"? Achinstein examines this question as it arose in actual scientific practice in three nineteenth-century episodes: the debate between particle and wave theorists of light, Maxwell's kinetic theory of gases, and J.J. (...)
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  12. Law and Explanation: An Essay in the Philosophy of Science.Peter Achinstein - 1971 - London: Oxford University Press.
  13. The Identity of Properties.Peter Achinstein - 1974 - American Philosophical Quarterly 11 (4):257 - 275.
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  14. On the New Riddle of Induction.S. F. Barker & Peter Achinstein - 1960 - Philosophical Review 69 (4):511-522.
  15. Models, Analogies, and Theories.Peter Achinstein - 1964 - Philosophy of Science 31 (4):328-350.
    Recent accounts of scientific method suggest that a model, or analogy, for an axiomatized theory is another theory, or postulate set, with an identical calculus. The present paper examines five central theses underlying this position. In the light of examples from physical science it seems necessary to distinguish between models and analogies and to recognize the need for important revisions in the position under study, especially in claims involving an emphasis on logical structure and similarity in form between theory and (...)
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  16.  21
    Evidence and Method: Scientific Strategies of Isaac Newton and James Clerk Maxwell.Peter Achinstein - 2013 - Oup Usa.
    In this book, Peter Achinstein proposes and defends several objective concepts of evidence. He then explores the question of whether a scientific method, such as that represented in the four "Rules for the Study of Natural Philosophy" that Isaac Newton invoked in proving his law of gravity, can be employed in demonstrating how the proposed definitions of evidence are to be applied to real scientific cases.
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  17.  14
    Between Science and Philosophy.Peter Achinstein - 1969 - Journal of Philosophy 66 (11):355-360.
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  18.  74
    On the Meaning of Scientific Terms.Peter Achinstein - 1964 - Journal of Philosophy 61 (17):497-509.
  19. Theoretical Models.Peter Achinstein - 1965 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 16 (62):102-120.
  20. Function Statements.Peter Achinstein - 1977 - Philosophy of Science 44 (3):341-367.
    An examination of difficulties in three standard accounts of functions leads to the suggestion that sentences of the form "the function of x is to do y" are used to make a variety of different claims, all of which involve a means-end relationship and the idea of design, or use, or benefit. The analysis proposed enables us to see what is right and also wrong with accounts that analyze the meaning of function statements in terms of good consequences, goals, and (...)
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  21.  74
    The Pragmatic Character of Explanation.Peter Achinstein - 1984 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1984:275 - 292.
    Theories of explanation are characterized as being either pragmatic or non-pragmatic, without a clear sense of what this is supposed to mean. The present paper offers a definition of a "pragmatic explanation-sentence", and in terms of this, of a "pragmatic theory of explanation". It is argued that van Fraassen's theory of explanation, despite claims to the contrary, is not genuinely pragmatic. By contrast, the author's own "illocutionary" theory is pragmatic. Attention is devoted particularly to sentences of the form "E is (...)
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  22.  53
    Causation, Transparency, and Emphasis.Peter Achinstein - 1975 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 5 (1):1 - 23.
    It is often said that singular causal statements express a relationship between one event and another or between a fact and an event. This is a very strong view, which has the following simple corollary: singular causal statements whose cause-term purports to refer to an event and whose effect-term purports to refer to an event express a relationship between an event and an event.Thus, both Davidson and Kim would claim that the singular causal Statement Socrates’ drinking hemlock at dusk caused (...)
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  23. Inference to the Best Explanation: Or, Who Won the Mill-Whewell Debate?Peter Achinstein - 1992 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 23 (2):349-364.
  24.  44
    The Problem of Theoretical Terms.Peter Achinstein - 1965 - American Philosophical Quarterly 2 (3):235-249.
  25. What to Do If You Want to Defend a Theory You Cannot Prove: A Method of "Physical Speculation".Peter Achinstein - 2010 - Journal of Philosophy 107 (1):35-56.
  26. Why Philosophical Theories of Evidence Are (and Ought to Be) Ignored by Scientists.Peter Achinstein - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (3):180-192.
    There are two reasons, I claim, scientists do and should ignore standard philosophical theories of objective evidence: (1) Such theories propose concepts that are far too weak to give scientists what they want from evidence, viz., a good reason to believe a hypothesis; and (2) They provide concepts that make the evidential relationship a priori, whereas typically establishing an evidential claim requires empirical investigation.
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  27. Are Empirical Evidence Claims a Priori?Peter Achinstein - 1995 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 46 (4):447-473.
    An a priori thesis about evidence, defended by many, states that the only empirical fact that can affect the truth of an objective evidence claim of the form ‘e is evidence for h’ (or ‘e confirms h to degree r’) is the truth of e; all other considerations are a priori. By examining cases involving evidential flaws, I challange this claim and defend an empirical concept of evidence. In accordance with such a concept, whether, and the extent to which, e, (...)
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  28.  70
    The War on Induction: Whewell Takes On Newton and Mill (Norton Takes On Everyone).Peter Achinstein - 2010 - Philosophy of Science 77 (5):728-739.
  29.  5
    The Philosophy of Biology. [REVIEW]Peter Achinstein - 1975 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 4 (4):745-754.
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  30.  56
    Scientific Evidence: Philosophical Theories & Applications.Peter Achinstein (ed.) - 2005 - The Johns Hopkins University Press.
    Peter Achinstein has gathered some prominent philosophers and historians of science for critical and lively discussions of both general questions about the ...
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  31.  52
    The Legacy of Logical Positivism: Studies in the Philosophy of Science.Peter Achinstein & Stephen Francis Barker (eds.) - 1969 - Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
  32.  51
    Scientific Discovery and Maxwell's Kinetic Theory.Peter Achinstein - 1987 - Philosophy of Science 54 (3):409-434.
    By reference to Maxwell's kinetic theory, one feature of hypothetico-deductivism is defended. A scientist need make no inference to a hypothesis when he first proposes it. He may have no reason at all for thinking it is true. Yet it may be worth considering. In developing his kinetic theory there were central assumptions Maxwell made (for example, that molecules are spherical, that they exert contact forces, and that their motion is linear) that he had no reason to believe true. In (...)
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  33. Theoretical Terms and Partial Interpretation.Peter Achinstein - 1963 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 14 (54):89-105.
  34. The Circularity of a Self-Supporting Inductive Argument.Peter Achinstein - 1962 - Analysis 22 (6):138.
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  35.  14
    Theory and Meaning.Peter Achinstein - 1982 - Philosophical Review 91 (3):493.
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  36.  78
    Atom's Empirical Eve: Methodological Disputes and How to Evaluate Them.Peter Achinstein - 2007 - Perspectives on Science 15 (3):359-390.
    : This paper examines the debate in the late 19th and early 20th centuries over the acceptability of atomic and molecular physics. It focuses on three prominent figures: Maxwell, who defended atomic physics, Ostwald, who initially rejected it but changed his mind as a result of experiments by Thomson and Perrin, and Duhem, who never accepted it. Each scientist defended the position he did in the light of strongly held methodological views concerning empirical evidence. The paper critically evaluates each of (...)
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  37. The Object of Explanation.Peter Achinstein - 1975 - In Stephan Kã¶Rner (ed.), Explanation. Blackwell. pp. 1--45.
  38.  34
    How to Defend a Theory Without Testing It: Niels Bohr and the "Logic of Pursuit".Peter Achinstein - 1993 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 18 (1):90-120.
  39.  61
    Inference to the Best Explanation: Or, Who Won the Mill-Whewell Debate?: Peter Lipton (London: Routledge, 1991), X+ 194 Pp. ISBN 0-415-05886-4 Cloth£ 35.00. [REVIEW]Peter Achinstein - 1991 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 23 (2):349-364.
  40.  62
    Variety and Analogy in Confirmation Theory.Peter Achinstein - 1963 - Philosophy of Science 30 (3):207-221.
    Confirmation theorists seek to define a function that will take into account the various factors relevant in determining the degree to which an hypothesis is confirmed by its evidence. Among confirmation theorists, only Rudolf Carnap has constructed a system which purports to consider factors in addition to the number of instances, viz. the variety manifested by the instances and the amount of analogy between the instances. It is the purpose of this paper to examine the problem which these additional factors (...)
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  41.  96
    What Is an Explanation?Peter Achinstein - 1977 - American Philosophical Quarterly 14 (1):1 - 15.
  42.  43
    Can There Be a Model of Explanation?Peter Achinstein - 1981 - Theory and Decision 13 (3):201-227.
  43. Subjective Views of Kuhn.Peter Achinstein - 2001 - Perspectives on Science 9 (4):423-432.
    In response to a charge of subjectivism, Kuhn in his Postscript emphasizes the importance of "values" (accuracy, simplicity, explanatory power, etc) that are shared by scientists generally. However, Kuhn adds, these values are applied differently by different scientists. By employing a comparison with partially subjective views of Carnap on confirming evidence, this paper raises questions about Kuhn's position on values by considering ways it might be interpreted as subjective and ways it may not.
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  44.  43
    Confirmation Theory, Order, and Periodicity.Peter Achinstein - 1963 - Philosophy of Science 30 (1):17-35.
    This paper examines problems of order and periodicity which arise when the attempt is made to define a confirmation function for a language containing elementary number theory as applied to a universe in which the individuals are considered to be arranged in some fixed order. Certain plausible conditions of adequacy are stated for such a confirmation function. By the construction of certain types of predicates, it is proved, however, that these conditions of adequacy are violated by any confirmation function defined (...)
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  45.  71
    A Challenge to Positive Relevance Theorists: Reply to Roush.Peter Achinstein - 2004 - Philosophy of Science 71 (4):521-524.
    Recently in this journal Sherrilyn Roush (2004) defends positive relevance as a necessary (albeit not a sufficient) condition for evidence by rejecting two of the counterexamples from my earlier (2001) work. In this reply I argue that Roush's critique is not successful.
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  46.  86
    Circularity and Induction.Peter Achinstein - 1963 - Analysis 23 (6):123 - 127.
  47.  55
    Light Hypotheses.Peter Achinstein - 1987 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 18 (3):293-337.
  48. Stronger Evidence.Peter Achinstein - 1994 - Philosophy of Science 61 (3):329-350.
    According to a standard account of evidence, one piece of information is stronger evidence for an hypothesis than is another iff the probability of the hypothesis on the one is greater than it is on the other. This condition, I argue, is neither necessary nor sufficient because various factors can strengthen the evidence for an hypothesis without increasing (and even decreasing) its probability. Contrary to what probabilists claim, I show that this obtains even if a probability function can take these (...)
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  49.  41
    The Only Game in Town.Peter Achinstein - 1990 - Philosophical Studies 58 (3):179 - 201.
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  50. Science Rules: A Historical Introduction to Scientific Methods.Peter Achinstein (ed.) - 2004 - Johns Hopkins University Press.
    Is there a universal set of rules for discovering and testing scientific hypotheses? Since the birth of modern science, philosophers, scientists, and other thinkers have wrestled with this fundamental question of scientific practice. Efforts to devise rigorous methods for obtaining scientific knowledge include the twenty-one rules Descartes proposed in his Rules for the Direction of the Mind and the four rules of reasoning that begin the third book of Newton's Principia , and continue today in debates over the very possibility (...)
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