[SydPhil] MQ Philosophy Seminar on Tuesday the 24th of October in Blackshield room: Carl Craver (wustl) (With Mark Povich)

Adam Hochman adam.hochman at mq.edu.au
Fri Oct 20 15:06:25 AEDT 2017

The Directionality of Distinctively Mathematical Explanations

Carl Craver (Washington University) (With Mark Povich)

Date: Tuesday, 24th of October
Time: 13:00 - 14:00
Venue: Blackshield room, W3A 501 *

All welcome

*Note the changing venues this semester

Abstract: In "What Makes a Scientific Explanation Distinctively Mathematical?" (2013b), Lange uses several compelling examples to argue that certain explanations for natural phenomena appeal primarily to mathematical, rather than natural, facts. In such explanations, the core explanatory facts are modally stronger than facts about causation, regularity, and other natural relations. We show that Lange's account of distinctively mathematical explanation is flawed in that it fails to account for the implicit directionality in each of his examples. This inadequacy is remediable in each case by appeal to ontic facts that account for why the explanation is acceptable in one direction and unacceptable in the other direction. The mathematics involved in these examples cannot play this crucial normative role. While Lange's examples fail to demonstrate the existence of distinctively mathematical explanations, they help to emphasize that many superficially natural scientific explanations rely for their explanatory force on relations of stronger-than-natural necessity. These are not opposing kinds of scientific explanations; they are different aspects of scientific explanation.

Contact: Adam Hochman (adam.hochman at mq.edu.au<mailto:adam.hochman at mq.edu.au>) or Mike Olson (michael.olson at mq.edu.au<mailto:michael.olson at mq.edu.au>)

A google calendar with details of other events in this series is available for viewing and subscription by following this link: goo.gl/3Iu7hk<https://protect-au.mimecast.com/s/Qv1bBRfv5WwlUk?domain=goo.gl>


Adam Hochman
Lecturer in Philosophy & Macquarie University Research Fellow

Department of Philosophy | W6A, Room 733
Macquarie University, NSW 2109, Australia

Staff Profile | http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/faculties_and_departments/faculty_of_arts/department_of_philosophy/staff/adam_hochman/

Academia.edu Page | https://protect-au.mimecast.com/s/xMnXB1UR1MDKiW?domain=mq.academia.edu

Philpapers Page | https://protect-au.mimecast.com/s/M41aBLUv3bkKUz?domain=philpapers.org

Personal Website | adamhochman.com
[Macquarie University]<http://mq.edu.au/>

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