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14. Science / D. Explanation / 2. Types of Explanation / c. Explanations by coherence

[explanation by showing how it fits into other beliefs]

14 ideas
Explanation of a fact is fitting it into a system of beliefs [Smart]
Explanations are bad by fitting badly with a web of beliefs, or fitting well into a bad web [Smart]
Deducing from laws is one possible way to achieve a coherent explanation [Smart]
Good explanations unify [Ellis]
An explanation is a model that fits a theory and predicts the phenomenological laws [Cartwright,N]
An explanation unifies a phenomenon with our account of other phenomena [Lipton]
We can go beyond mere causal explanations if we believe in an 'order of being' [Cover/O'Leary-Hawthorne]
1: Coherence is a symmetrical relation between two propositions [Smart on Thagard]
2: An explanation must wholly cohere internally, and with the new fact [Smart on Thagard]
3: If an analogous pair explain another analogous pair, then they all cohere [Smart on Thagard]
4: For coherence, observation reports have a degree of intrinsic acceptability [Smart on Thagard]
5: Contradictory propositions incohere [Smart on Thagard]
6: A proposition's acceptability depends on its coherence with a system [Smart on Thagard]
We explain by deriving the properties of a phenomenon by embedding it in a large abstract theory [Ladyman/Ross]