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Manuscrito, Volume: 42, Issue: 3, Published: 2019


    Abstract in English:

    Abstract According to a widespread view, Thomas Kuhn’s model of scientific development would relegate rationality to a second plane, openly flirting with irrationalist positions. The intent of this article is to clarify this aspect of his thinking and refute this common interpretation. I begin by analysing the nature of values in Kuhn’s model and how they are connected to rationality. For Kuhn, a theory is chosen rationally when: i) the evaluation is based on values characteristic of science; ii) a theory is considered better the more it manifests these values; and iii) the scientist chooses the best-evaluated theory. The second part of this article deals with the thesis of the variability of values. According to Kuhn, the examples through which epistemic values are presented vary for each person, and for this reason individuals interpret these criteria differently. Consequently, two scientists, using the same values, can come to a rational disagreement over which theory to choose. Finally, I point out the limitations of this notion of rationality for the explanation of consensus formation, and the corresponding demand for a sociological theory that reconnects individual rationality with convergence of opinions.


    Abstract in English:

    Abstract The five modes are a list of tools used by ancient sceptics to guide dogmatic people towards suspending their judgement. Attributed to Agrippa (of uncertain date) and used extensively by Sextus Empiricus (2nd or 3rd century CE), these modes are still widely discussed today by epistemologists and specialists in ancient philosophy. Scholars disagree, however, on how to understand the way the five modes are used together and what the logical form of the sceptical strategy behind their deployment is. This paper offers a reconstruction of the system of the five modes that avoids these problems. In specific, unlike previous reconstructions, (a) it includes a non-trivial version of the mode of relativity, (b) avoids committing the sceptic to a normative principle and (c) follows the textual evidence more closely. Moreover, I argue that the system can be better understood as a list of steps in a process, whose underlying logic can be expressed by a single algorithm.
  • From modal fallacies to a new argument for fatalism Articles


    Abstract in English:

    Abstract Do incompatibilist arguments, like some fatalist arguments, rest on modal fallacies? If Westphal (2012) is right, then one popular argument for incompatibilism van Inwagen’s “First Formal Argument” does rest on a modal fallacy. Similarly, Warfield (2000) claims that the standard modal formulation of the master argument for incompatibilism is a modal fallacy. Here, I refute both claims. Contra Westphal, I show that the mistake in van Inwagen’s "First Formal Argument" is no modal fallacy. After that, I argue that Warfield’s charge of modal fallacy can be easily avoided by using a plausible principle concerning actuality. Then, I show that this allows one to put forward a fairly simple argument for fatalism (the thesis that we aren’t able to do otherwise from what we actually do).


    Abstract in English:

    Abstract Computer models and simulations have provided enormous benefits to researchers in the natural and social sciences, as well as many areas of philosophy. However, to date, there has been little attempt to use computer models in the development and evaluation of metaphysical theories. This is a shame, as there are good reasons for believing that metaphysics could benefit just as much from this practice as other disciplines. In this paper I assess the possibilities and limitations of using computer models in metaphysics. I outline the way in which different kinds of model could be useful for different areas of metaphysics, and I illustrate in more detail how agent-based models specifically could be used to model two well-known theories of laws: David Lewis’s "Best System Account" and David Armstrong's "Nomic Necessitation" view. Some logically possible processes cannot be simulated on a standard computing device. I finish by assessing how much of a threat this is to the prospect of metaphysical modeling in general.
  • BOOK REVIEW: LUDLOW, P., Interperspectival Content (Oxford University Press, 2019, 272 pages.)* Book Review


    Abstract in English:

    Abstract In this review, I present and discuss the main aspects of Peter Ludlow's theory of interperspectival contents.
  • ERRATA Errata

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