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26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 8. Scientific Essentialism / d. Knowing essences

[whether we can know essences, and if so, how]

15 ideas
Scientists must know the essential attributes of the things they study [Aristotle]
No one even knows the nature and properties of a fly - why it has that colour, or so many feet [Bacon,R]
We identify substances by supposing that groups of sensations arise from an essence [Locke]
Other spirits may exceed us in knowledge, by knowing the inward constitution of things [Locke]
By digging deeper into the axioms we approach the essence of sciences, and unity of knowedge [Hilbert]
Real essences are scientifically knowable, but so are non-essential properties [Copi]
Without general principles, we couldn't predict the behaviour of dispositional properties [Ellis]
Essentialism requires a clear separation of semantics, epistemology and ontology [Ellis]
It looks as if the immutability of the powers of a property imply essentiality [Shoemaker]
Science searches basic structures in search of essences [Kripke]
Find the essence by varying an object, to see what remains invariable [Velarde-Mayol]
Some dispositions are so far unknown, until we learn how to manifest them [Mumford]
To distinguish accidental from essential properties, we must include possible members of kinds [Mumford]
Essentialism starts from richly structured categories, leading to a search for underlying properties [Gelman]
If flame colour is characteristic of a metal, that is an empirical claim needing justification [Bird]