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26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 9. Counterfactual Claims

[laws as involving claims about other possible worlds]

10 ideas
In counterfactuals we keep substances constant, and imagine new situations for them [Harré]
Many counterfactual truths do not imply causation ('if yesterday wasn't Monday, it isn't Tuesday') [Psillos on Kim]
Lewis's account of counterfactuals is fine if we know what a law of nature is, but it won't explain the latter [Cohen,LJ on Lewis]
An event causes another just if the second event would not have happened without the first [Psillos on Lewis]
Laws are true generalisations which support counterfactuals and are confirmed by instances [Fodor]
'If he wasn't born he wouldn't have died' doesn't mean birth causes death, so causation isn't counterfactual [Lowe]
Dowe commends the Conserved Quantity theory as it avoids mention of counterfactuals [Psillos on Dowe]
In some counterfactuals, the counterfactual event happens later than its consequent [Psillos]
Counterfactual theories say causes make a difference - if c hadn't occurred, then e wouldn't occur [Psillos]
Essentialism can't use conditionals to explain regularities, because of possible interventions [Bird]