Agency and Answerability: Selected Essays by Gary Watson

By Gary Watson

Because the Nineteen Seventies Gary Watson has released a sequence of extraordinary and hugely influential essays on human motion, analyzing such questions as: in what methods are we unfastened and never loose, rational and irrational, liable or no longer for what we do? ethical philosophers and philosophers of motion will welcome this assortment, representing the most very important our bodies of labor within the box.

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Second, it should be pointed out that such trans-empirical theories as Laudan refers to would never even have been proposed had their propounders not adopted a realist attitude. Third, so long as the theoretical entities to which the realist’s theory refers are inaccessible, he should recognise as well as anyone that the theory is merely hypothetical, that is, that it is a theory and not a fact. 97 This idea of establishing the correctness of theories, expressed in terms of determining them to be true, is rather that of the logical empiricists, who have this aim with regard to theories conceived as universal statements (which has led to their problem of confirmation).

439. Hempel (1970), pp. 157–158. 73 Hempel (1973), p. 377. 74 Harr´e (1972), p. 29. 75 Harr´e (1970a), p. 281. Wesley Salmon advances a similar view: “attempting to give a logical characterization of scientific explanation is a futile venture, and . . 72 34 CHAPTER 1 Harr´e questions not only the notions of truth and falsity as engendered by logic, but also the formalistic idea that science aims to establish deductive relations among statements. ’ But it is just the very theory which runs fastest into difficulties.

105, 110, 129, 138, 166. Poincar´e’s general principles are more similar to Whewell’s empirical specifications of metaphysical maxims and to what in the present study are termed refined principles, while Whewell’s metaphysical maxims are more similar to what we term fundamental principles. , p. 152. 34 Whewell (1860), p. 231. 22 CHAPTER 1 Like Mach (and Comte in places), Poincar´e admits that theories or ‘indifferent hypotheses’ may have a place in science, in that they may give satisfaction to the mind;35 but also in the spirit of Mach he warns against their being taken too seriously: “These indifferent hypotheses are never dangerous provided their characters are not misunderstood.

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