idea number gives full details.     |    back to list of philosophers     |     expand these ideas

Ideas of Rom Harré, by Text

[British, fl. 1970, At Oxford University.]

1993 Laws of Nature
1 p.9 We take it that only necessary happenings could be laws
1 p.10 Laws can come from data, from theory, from imagination and concepts, or from procedures
1 p.11 Classification is just as important as laws in natural science
1 p.22 Newton's First Law cannot be demonstrated experimentally, as that needs absence of external forces
1 p.34 Laws describe abstract idealisations, not the actual mess of nature
1 p.35 Idealisation idealises all of a thing's properties, but abstraction leaves some of them out
1 p.37 Reports of experiments eliminate the experimenter, and present results as the behaviour of nature
2 p.39 Are laws about what has or might happen, or do they also cover all the possibilities?
2 p.39 Are laws of nature about events, or types and universals, or dispositions, or all three?
2 p.39 Must laws of nature be universal, or could they be local?
2 p.44 Scientific properties are not observed qualities, but the dispositions which create them
2 p.46 In counterfactuals we keep substances constant, and imagine new situations for them
2 p.48 Maybe laws of nature are just relations between properties?
3 p.59 Some quantifiers, such as 'any', rule out any notion of order within their range
3 p.62 The Square of Opposition has two contradictory pairs, one contrary pair, and one sub-contrary pair
3 p.67 In physical sciences particular observations are ordered, but in biology only the classes are ordered
3 p.75 We can save laws from counter-instances by treating the latter as analytic definitions
3 p.78 Since there are three different dimensions for generalising laws, no one system of logic can cover them
4 p.87 Laws of nature remain the same through any conditions, if the underlying mechanisms are unchanged
4 p.100 The necessity of Newton's First Law derives from the nature of material things, not from a mechanism
5 p.102 Science rests on the principle that nature is a hierarchy of natural kinds
5 p.103 'Grue' introduces a new causal hypothesis - that emeralds can change colour
5 p.105 The grue problem shows that natural kinds are central to science
5 p.110 It is because ravens are birds that their species and their colour might be connected
5 p.111 Non-black non-ravens just aren't part of the presuppositions of 'all ravens are black'
5 p.111 Traditional quantifiers combine ordinary language generality and ontology assumptions
5 p.114 Laws of nature state necessary connections of things, events and properties, based on models of mechanisms