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Laws and lawmakers : science, metaphysics, and the laws of nature

Author: Marc Lange
Publisher: New York ; Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2009.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
What distinguishes laws of nature from ordinary facts? What are the 'lawmakers': the facts in virtue of which the laws are laws? How can laws be necessary, yet contingent? Lange provocatively argues that laws are distinguished by their necessity, while also providing a non-technical and accessible survey of the field.
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Lange, Marc, 1963-
Laws and lawmakers.
New York ; Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2009
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Marc Lange
ISBN: 9780199745036 019974503X 0195328132 9780195328134
OCLC Number: 466418048
Description: 1 online resource (xviii, 257 pages) : illustrations
Contents: Preface ; CHAPTER 1: LAWS FORM COUNTERFACTUALLY STABLE SETS ; 1. Welcome ; 2. Their necessity sets the laws apart ; 3. The laws's persistence under counterfactuals ; 4. Nomic preservation ; 5. Beyond nomic preservation ; 6. A host of related problems: triviality, circularity, arbitrariness ; 7. Sub-nomic stability ; 8. No nonmaximal set containing accidents possesses sub-nomic stability ; 9. How two sub-nomically stable sets must be related: multiple strata of natural laws ; 10. Why the laws would still have been laws ; 11. Conclusion: laws form stable sets ; CHAPTER 2: NATURAL NECESSITY ; 1. What it would take to understand natural necessity ; 2. The Euthyphro question ; 3. David Lewis's "Best-System Account" ; 4. Lewis's account and the laws's supervenience ; 5. The Euthyphro question returns ; 6. Are all relative necessities created equal? ; 7. The modality principle ; 8. A proposal for distinguishing genuine from merely relative modalities ; 9. Borrowing a strategy from Chapter 1 ; 10. Necessity as maximal invariance ; 11. The laws form a system ; 12. Scientific essentialism squashes the pyramid ; 13. Why there is a natural ordering of the genuine modalities ; 14. Why there is a natural ordering of the genuine modalities ; CHAPTER 3: THREE PAYOFFS OF MY ACCOUNT ; 1. The itinerary ; 2. Could the laws of nature change? ; 3. Why the laws are immutable ; 4. Symmetry principles as meta-laws ; 5. The symmetry meta-laws form a nomically stable set ; 6. The relation between chancy facts and deterministic laws ; 7. How to account for the relation ; CHAPTER 4: A WORLD OF SUBJUNCTIVES ; 1. What if the lawmakers were subjunctive facts? ; 2. The lawmakers's regress ; 3. Stability ; 4. Avoiding adhocery ; 5. Instantaneous rates of change and the causal explanation problem ; 6. Et in Arcadia ego ; 7. The rule of law ; 8. Why the laws must be complete ; 9. Envoi: Am I cheating?
Other Titles: Laws & lawmakers
Responsibility: Marc Lange.
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Abstract:

What distinguishes laws of nature from ordinary facts? What are the "lawmakers": the facts in virtue of which the laws are laws? How can laws be necessary, yet contingent? Lange provocatively argues  Read more...

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Marc Lange takes a refreshingly open-minded and original approach to laws of nature... highly recommended to all philosophers of science who are interested in laws of nature and neighbouring topics. Read more...

 
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