Download David Armstrong (Philosophy Now) by Stephen Mumford PDF

By Stephen Mumford

David (D. M.) Armstrong is one in all Australia's maximum philosophers. His leader philosophical success has been the improvement of a center metaphysical programme, embracing the themes of universals, legislation, modality and proof: a naturalistic metaphysics, in line with a systematic view of the wildlife. it truly is basically via his owrk that Australian philosophy, and Australian metaphysics particularly, enjoys this type of excessive recognition within the remainder of the realm. during this ebook Stephen Mumford deals an creation to the entire diversity of Armstrong's idea. Mumford starts off with a dialogue of Armstong's naturalism, his so much normal dedication, and his realism approximately universals. He then examines his theories of legislation, modality and inclinations, which make up the fundamentals of Armstrong's middle idea. With this in position, Mumford explores his principles on conception, brain and trust earlier than returning to metaphysics within the final chapters, fact and the recent view of instantiation. The ebook is a dispassionate, reasonable and independent account of Armstrong's concept. even though Armstong's is a physique of labor that Mumford regards hugely and of genuine value, he however highlights parts of weak spot and concerns approximately which there's room for additional debate.

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Extra resources for David Armstrong (Philosophy Now)

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Regularities do not have the inner connection that we think there should be in a law. We should have a law only when there is a connection between something being F and something being G, and not just when the class of things that are F is a sub-class of the things that are G. Consequently, being F is not an explanation of something being G, on the regularity theory, which it would be if there were a genuine law of nature that makes everything that is F also G. Because of this, regularity laws do not sustain counterfactual claims, which we think real laws should.

A common such example is the so-called accidental uniformity. A famous case, which comes from Popper (1959: 427–8), is that of the New Zealand moa bird. All moas died, let us suppose, before becoming 50 years old. Let us assume they died before 50 because of some virus that wiped them out. They are now extinct. Without the virus, they might well have lived longer in so far as there was nothing in their genetic make-up that prevented them from having a longer life. Perhaps one such moa avoided the virus and was in good health, only to be eaten by a predator on the eve of its fiftieth birthday.

They are simply saying that the things that are F are within the extension of things that are G, or things that are F are a subset of things that are G. ) Restrictions are often placed on such material conditionals, if they are to express regularities fit to be laws of nature. As well as being true, the statement that ∀x (Fx → Gx) must also be contingent. Some analytic truths may also have this form, such as that all bachelors are unmarried men. On the widely held assumption that bachelor means unmarried man, this could not fail to be true.

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