Models pp 24-39 | Cite as

Models, Metaphysics and the Vagaries of Empiricism

  • Marx W. Wartofsky
Part of the Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science book series (BSPS, volume 48)


In what sense, in using a model, does one make or avoid metaphysical commitments? That is, in what sense does one commit oneself to claims concerning the existence of the entities, (relations, processes, events) which the model proposes? The pervasive use of models in both the didactic and theoretical aspects of science prompts this reconsideration of what is a classical problem in philosophy, concerning the nature of reality- or existence-claims, and inevitably then, of their warrant. More specifically, the question concerns scientific hypotheses, and whether, and in what sense such hypotheses make cognitive claims concerning what there is.


Reduction Base Naive Realism Existential Claim Metaphysical Commitment Inference Machine 
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.


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  1. 1.
    Marx W. Wartofsky, ‘Metaphysics as Heuristic for Science’, this volume, pp. 40–89.Google Scholar

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© D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht, Holland 1979

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  • Marx W. Wartofsky

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