Natural Laws in Scientific Practice
It is often presumed that the laws of nature have special significance for scientific reasoning. But the laws' distinctive roles have proven notoriously difficult to identify--leading some philosophers to question if they hold such roles at all. This study offers original accounts of the roles that natural laws play in connection with counterfactual conditionals, inductive projections, and scientific explanations, and of what the laws must be in order for them to be capable of playing these roles. Particular attention is given to laws of special sciences, levels of scientific explanation, natural kinds, ceteris-paribus clauses, and physically necessary non-laws.
Laws Regularities and Provisos
2 The problem of provisos
3 What a proviso means
4 Provisos and regularities
5 Nonbacktracking again
7 A further kind of proviso
Accounts of laws as inferencelicenses 7 Schlick Ryle and others
The Root Commitment
2 Challenges to Apreservation
4 Why Apreservation?
Why Are the Laws of Nature So Important to Science I?
3 Counterfactuals and the root commitment 37 Multiple grades of physical necessity
1 Inductive confirmation 77 Goodmans suggestion
2 Two intuitions about induction
4 Inductive confirmability physical necessity and preservation
Alternative notions of inductive confirmation
2 What Earmans notions of projection fail to capture
Inductive confirmation and the paradox of the ravens
Why Are the Laws of Nature So Important to Science II?
2 Inductive strategies as free electives
2 Physically necessary nonlaws
3 Inductive strategies
4 Natural kinds and laws about laws
The Autonomy of Scientific Disciplines and Levels of Scientific Explanation
2 Preservation variation and laws concerning particular biological species
3 What is the proviso?
4 The proviso identified
5 Micro and macro explanations
6 Stability and the autonomy of macro disciplines
7 Explanation and possibility
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A-preservation accident accidental actual laws actual unexamined actual world argue atomic believe Boyle's Boyle's law ceteris paribus chapter claims closest p-world closest possible world concerning confirm h confirmed inductively consistent context copper objects correct counterfactual antecedent counterfactual conditionals counterfactual supposition Darcy discovering electrically conductive emerald slice entails equation example explain fails Fs are G Goodman grue h inductively h's predictions holds Hooke's law hypothesis inductive confirmation inductive strategies inference rule instance intuitions island biogeography law-statement lawhood laws of nature lone-proton world macro laws micro natural kinds natural law nomic non-nomic facts non-nomic stability nonblack things nontrivial non-nomic particles pear physical necessity physically necessary nonlaws possesses non-nomic stability possible world preserved proton proviso range of invariance raven paradox ravens regarding relation to counterfactuals relevant reliable requires root commitment salient scientific set of inductive sort subjunctive Suppose tion truth various Waals's
Page v - Praise the Lord — for he is glorious ; Never shall his promise fail ; God hath made his saints victorious, Sin and death shall not prevail. 4 Praise the God of our salvation, Hosts on high his power proclaim ; Heaven and earth, and all creation, Laud and magnify his name.
Page 20 - The number of equal spaces in the shorter leg, that contained the same parcel of air diversely extended. B. The height of the mercurial cylinder in the longer leg, that compressed the air into those dimensions. C. The height of the mercurial cylinder that counterbalanced the pressure of the atmosphere. D. The aggregate of the two last columns, B and C, exhibiting the pressure sustained by the included air.