Armstrong and van Fraassen on Probabilistic Laws of Nature

Canadian Journal of Philosophy 42 (1):1-13 (2012)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

In What is a Law of Nature? (1983) David Armstrong promotes a theory of laws according to which laws of nature are contingent relations of necessitation between universals. The metaphysics Armstrong develops uses deterministic causal laws as paradigmatic cases of laws, but he thinks his metaphysics explicates other sorts of laws too, including probabilistic laws, like that of the half-life of radium being 1602 years. Bas van Fraassen (1987) gives seven arguments for why Armstrong’s theory of laws is incapable of explicating probabilistic laws. The main thrust of the arguments is that Armstrong’s metaphysical apparatus serves to drive up the initial probability values stated by probabilistic laws. Armstrong replies ..

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 93,069

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

David Armstrong on functional laws.John Forge - 1986 - Philosophy of Science 53 (4):584-587.
Armstrong on laws and probabilities.Bas C. van Fraassen - 1987 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 65 (3):243 – 260.
Platonic Laws of Nature.Tyler Hildebrand - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (3):365-381.
An Armstrongian defense of dispositional monist accounts of laws of nature.Mousa Mohammadian - 2022 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 12 (3):1-15.
Tooley's Theory of Laws of Nature.Stephen C. Hetherington - 1983 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 13 (1):101-114.
Tooley's Theory of Laws of Nature.Stephen C. Hetherington - 1983 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 13 (1):101 - 106.

Analytics

Added to PP
2012-12-24

Downloads
697 (#25,086)

6 months
27 (#113,742)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Duncan Charles Maclean
McMaster University (PhD)

Citations of this work

Add more citations

References found in this work

What is a Law of Nature?D. M. Armstrong - 1983 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Sydney Shoemaker.
Scientific Essentialism.Brian Ellis - 2001 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
Humean Supervenience Debugged.David Lewis - 1994 - Mind 103 (412):473--490.
Laws and Symmetry.Bas C. Van Fraassen - 1989 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 182 (3):327-329.

View all 16 references / Add more references