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14. Science / D. Explanation / 2. Types of Explanation / d. Lawlike explanations

[explain events by showing laws imply them]

35 ideas
Chance is inexplicable, because we can only explain what happens always or usually [Aristotle]
Explanation and generality are inseparable [Aristotle]
Facts should be deducible from the theory and initial conditions, and prefer the simpler theory [Harré/Madden on Osiander]
Positivism explains facts by connecting particular phenomena with general facts [Comte]
Explanation is fitting of facts into ever more general patterns of regularity [Ruben on Mill]
We give a mathematical account of a system of natural connections in order to clarify them [Heisenberg]
The modern worldview is based on the illusion that laws explain nature [Wittgenstein]
For Hempel, explanations are deductive-nomological or probabilistic-statistical [Bird on Hempel]
The covering-law model is for scientific explanation; historical explanation is quite different [Hempel]
We must distinguish true laws because they (unlike accidental generalizations) explain things [Salmon]
Deductive-nomological explanations will predict, and their predictions will explain [Salmon]
A law is not enough for explanation - we need information about what makes a difference [Salmon]
To explain observations by a regular law is to explain the observations by the observations [Armstrong]
Science may well pursue generalised explanation, rather than laws [Lewis]
The covering law view assumes that each phenomenon has a 'right' explanation [Cartwright,N]
Laws get the facts wrong, and explanation rests on improvements and qualifications of laws [Cartwright,N]
Laws apply to separate domains, but real explanations apply to intersecting domains [Cartwright,N]
Covering-law explanation lets us explain storms by falling barometers [Cartwright,N]
I disagree with the covering-law view that there is a law to cover every single case [Cartwright,N]
You can't explain one quail's behaviour by just saying that all quails do it [Cartwright,N]
Deduction explanation is too easy; any law at all will imply the facts - together with the facts! [Lipton]
Good explanations may involve no laws and no deductions [Lipton]
We reject deductive explanations if they don't explain, not if the deduction is bad [Lipton]
The explanation is not the regularity, but the activity sustaining it [Machamer/Darden/Craver]
General laws depend upon the capacities of particulars, not the other way around [Mumford]
Just citing a cause does not enable us to understand an event; we also need a relevant law [Psillos]
The 'covering law model' says only laws can explain the occurrence of single events [Psillos]
If laws explain the length of a flagpole's shadow, then the shadow also explains the length of the pole [Psillos]
Laws should help explain the things they govern, or that manifest them [Maudlin]
'Covering law' explanations only work if no other explanations are to be found [Bird]
Livers always accompany hearts, but they don't explain hearts [Bird]
Maybe an instance of a generalisation is more explanatory than the particular case [Steiner,M]
Generalisations must be invariant to explain anything [Leuridan]
It is tempting to think that only entailment provides a full explanation [Mumford/Anjum]
Mathematics can reveal structural similarities in diverse systems [Colyvan]