Advertisement

Laws of Nature and the Problem of Exceptions

  • Billy WheelerEmail author
Chapter
  • 206 Downloads
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Philosophy book series (BRIEFSPHILOSOPH)

Abstract

Chapter 1 traces the development of the discussion around exceptions to scientific laws and the different solutions previous philosophers of science have taken on this issue. It is argued that a case can be made for separating exception-ridden laws into a least two groups: ceteris paribus laws and ideal laws. The former make true but indefinite claims about the world, whereas the latter make false but definite claims. Each comes with distinctive epistemological and metaphysical problems.

Keywords

Ceteris Paribus Laws Ideal Law Scientific Laws Chance Law Special Force Laws 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Armstrong, D. 1983. What is a law of nature? Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Baker, G., and J. Blackburn. 2005. The pendulum: A case study in physics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Braddon-Mitchell, D. 2001. Lossy laws. Nous 35 (2): 260–277.Google Scholar
  4. Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopædia. 2009. Kepler’s laws of planetary motion. Encyclopædia Britannica. November 17. https://www.britannica.com/science/Keplers-laws-of-planetary-motion.
  5. Canfield, J., and K. Lehrer. 1961. A note on prediction and deduction. Philosophy of Science 28: 204–208.Google Scholar
  6. Carnap, R. 1950. Logical foundations of probability. Chicago: Chicago University Press.Google Scholar
  7. Cartwright, N. 1999. The dappled world. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  8. Cartwright, N. 1983. How the laws of physics lie. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  9. Cartwright, N. 1989. Nature’s capacities and their measurement. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Chakravartty, A. 2001. The semantic or model-theoretic view of theories and scientific. Synthese 127 (3): 325–345.Google Scholar
  11. Christensen, D. 1983. Glymour on evidential relevance. Philosophy of Science 50 (3): 471–481.Google Scholar
  12. Earman, J., and J. Roberts. 1999. Ceteris paribus, there is no problem of provisos. Synthese 118 (3): 439–478.Google Scholar
  13. Earman, J., J. Robers, S. Smith. 2002. Ceteris paribus lost. In Ceteris paribus laws, ed. J. Earman, C. Glymour, and S. Mitchell, 5–25. Dodrecht: Kluwer.Google Scholar
  14. Fodor, J. 1991. You can fool some of the people all of the time, everything else being equal: hedged laws and psychological explanations. Mind 100 (1): 19–34.Google Scholar
  15. Giere, R. 1988. Explaining science: A cognitive approach. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  16. Giere, R. 2004. How models are used to represent reality. Philosophy of Science 71 (5): 742–752.Google Scholar
  17. Giere, R. 1999. Science without laws. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  18. Glymour, C. 1980. Theory and evidence. New Jersey: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  19. Goodman, N. 1954. Fact, fiction and forecast. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  20. Hausman, D. 1992. The inexact and seperate science of economics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  21. Hempel, C. 1988. “A Problem concerning the Inferential Function of Scientific Theories.” Erkenntnis 28 (2): 147–164.Google Scholar
  22. Lange, M. 1993. Natural laws and the problem of provisos. Erkenntnis 38 (2): 233–248.Google Scholar
  23. Laymon, R. 1989. Cartwright and the lying laws of physics. The Journal of Philosophy 86 (7): 353–372.Google Scholar
  24. Laymon, R. 1985. Idealizations and the hypothetico-deductive method. In Observation, experiment, and hypothesis in modern physical science, ed. P. Achinstein, O. Hannaway, 147–173. London: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  25. Lewis, D. 1986. Causation. In Philosophical papers, vol. 2, ed. D. Lews, 159–213. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  26. Lewis, D. 1973. Counterfactuals. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  27. Lewis, D. 1994. Humean supervenience debugged. Mind 103 (412): 473–490.Google Scholar
  28. Lews, D. 1983. New work for a theory of universals. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 61 (4): 343–377.Google Scholar
  29. Lipton, P. 1999. All else being equal. Philosophy 74 (2): 155–168.Google Scholar
  30. Maclean, D. 2010. McMaster University. The metaphysics of probabilitic laws: Unpublished Ph.D. thesis. https://macsphere.mcmaster.ca/handle/11375/18998.
  31. Matthews, M. 2004. Idealisation and Galileo’s pendulum discoveries: Historical, philosophical and pedagogical considerations. Science and Education 13 (7): 689–715.Google Scholar
  32. McMullin, E. 1985. Galilean idealization. Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science 16 (3): 247–273.Google Scholar
  33. Milton, J. 1981. The origin and development of the concept laws of nature. European Journal of Sociology 22 (2): 173–195.Google Scholar
  34. Mohanty, J.N. 2000. Classical Indian philosophy. Oxford: Rowman & Littlefield.Google Scholar
  35. Mumford, S. 1998. Dispositions. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  36. Needham, J. 1951. Human laws and laws of nature in China and the West. Journal of the History of Ideas 12 (1): 3–30.Google Scholar
  37. Nelson, R., and M. Olsson. 1986. The pendulum—Rich physics from a simple system. American Journal of Physics 54 (2): 112–121.Google Scholar
  38. Nowak, L. 1980. The structure of idealization. Dordrecht: Reidel.Google Scholar
  39. Ott, W. 2009. Causation and laws of nature in early modern philosophy. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  40. Pietroski, P., and G. Rey. 1995. When other things aren’t equal: Saving ceteris paribus laws. The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 46 (1): 81–110.Google Scholar
  41. Quine, W.V.O. 1960. Word and object. Cambridge: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  42. Ramsey, F. 1931. Truth and probability. In Foundations of mathematics and other essays, ed. R. Braithwaite, 156–198. London: Kegan and Paul.Google Scholar
  43. Reutlinger, A., and M. Unterhuber. 2014. Thinking about non-universal laws: Introduction to the special issue ceteris paribus laws revisited. Erkenntnis 79 (S10): 1703–1713.Google Scholar
  44. Reutlinger, A., G. Schurz, A. Hutteman. 2015. Ceteris paribus laws. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ed. E. Zalta. https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/ceteris-paribus.
  45. Ruby, J. 1986. The Origins of Scientific “Law”. Journal of the History of Ideas 47 (3): 341–359.Google Scholar
  46. Ryle, G. 1949. The concept of mind. London: Hutchinsons Universal Library.Google Scholar
  47. Schaffer, J. 2007. Deterministic chance? The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 58 (2): 113–140.Google Scholar
  48. Schiffer, S. 1991. Ceteris Paribus laws. Mind 100 (1): 1–17.Google Scholar
  49. Schrenk, M. 2014. Better best systems and the issue of CP laws. Erkenntnis 79 (S10): 1787–1799.Google Scholar
  50. Schrenk, M. 2007. The metaphysics of Ceteris Paribus laws. Lancaster: Ontos-Verlag.Google Scholar
  51. Schurz, G. 2002. Ceteris Paribus laws: Classification and deconstruction. Erkenntnis 57 (3): 351–372.Google Scholar
  52. Scriven, M. 1959. The key property of physical laws—Inaccuracy. In current issues in the philosophy of science, ed. H. Fiegel, and G. Maxwell, 91–104. New York: Rinehart and Winston.Google Scholar
  53. Silverberg, A. 1996. Psychological laws and non-monotonic logic. Erkenntnis 44 (2): 199–224.Google Scholar
  54. Swartz, N. 1995. A neo-humean perspective: Laws as regularities. In Laws of nature—Essays on the philosophical, scientific and historical dimensions, ed. F. Weinert, 67–91. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter.Google Scholar
  55. Swartz, N. 1985. The concept of physical law. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  56. van Fraassen, B. 1989. Laws and symmetry. Oxford: Clarenden Press.Google Scholar
  57. Venn, J. 1876. The logic of chance. McMillan: New York.Google Scholar
  58. Zilsel, E. 1942. The genesis of the concept of physical law. The Philosophical Review 51 (3): 245–279.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophySun Yat-Sen UniversityZhuhaiChina

Personalised recommendations