Particles do not conspire

Shahvisi, Arianne (2019) Particles do not conspire. Journal for General Philosophy of Science. pp. 1-23. ISSN 0925-4560

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The aim of this paper is to debunk the assertion that miraculous “conspiracies” between fundamental particles are required to bring about the projectibility of special science generalisations. Albert and Loewer have proposed a theory of lawhood which supplements the Best System of fundamental laws with a statistical postulate over the initial conditions of the universe, thereby rendering special science generalisations highly probable, and dispelling the conspiracy. However, concerns have been raised about its ability to confer typicality upon special science generalisations in the way that is required. In this paper I defend their account against these charges, arguing that they derive from a misunderstanding of the typicality claim. I suggest a way out of the impasse via a naturalised approach which focusses on the genealogy of subsystems and encourages conceptual demonstrations of typicality for special science generalisations. I argue for an account of special-science laws that acknowledges the way in which the special sciences reduce to the fundamental physics, thereby dissolving the conspiracy, yet respects the methodological and explanatory autonomy of special science generalisations.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Brighton and Sussex Medical School
Depositing User: Arianne Shahvisi
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2019 10:38
Last Modified: 22 Nov 2019 12:30

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