Orthodoxy has it that all counterpossibles are vacuously true. Yet there are strong argumentsboth for and against the use of non-vacuous counterpossibles in metaphysics. Even more compelling evidence may be expected from science. Arguably philosophy should defer to best scientific practice. If scientific practice comes with a commitment to non-vacuous counterpossibles, this may be the decisive reason to reject semantic orthodoxy and accept nonvacuity. I critically examine various examples of the purported scientific use of non-vacuous counterpossibles and argue that they are not convincing. They neither establish that scientific practice comes with a commitment to the non-vacuity of counterpossibles, nor that incurring such a commitment would be useful in scientific practice. I illustrate a variety of counterstrategies on behalf of orthodoxy.

The Counterpossibles of Science vs. the Science of Counterpossibles / D. Dohrn. - In: BRITISH JOURNAL FOR THE PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE. - ISSN 0007-0882. - (2021). [Epub ahead of print] [10.1086/716769]

The Counterpossibles of Science vs. the Science of Counterpossibles

D. Dohrn
2021

Abstract

Orthodoxy has it that all counterpossibles are vacuously true. Yet there are strong argumentsboth for and against the use of non-vacuous counterpossibles in metaphysics. Even more compelling evidence may be expected from science. Arguably philosophy should defer to best scientific practice. If scientific practice comes with a commitment to non-vacuous counterpossibles, this may be the decisive reason to reject semantic orthodoxy and accept nonvacuity. I critically examine various examples of the purported scientific use of non-vacuous counterpossibles and argue that they are not convincing. They neither establish that scientific practice comes with a commitment to the non-vacuity of counterpossibles, nor that incurring such a commitment would be useful in scientific practice. I illustrate a variety of counterstrategies on behalf of orthodoxy.
Settore M-FIL/05 - Filosofia e Teoria dei Linguaggi
Settore M-FIL/02 - Logica e Filosofia della Scienza
Dipartimenti di Eccellenza 2018-2022 - Dipartimento di FILOSOFIA
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/882046
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