PHILO1200LecJan30

PHILO1200LecJan30 - Philosophy 1200 Friday January 30th...

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Philosophy 1200 – Friday, January 30 th Theoretical Explanations Today: 1. Review 2. ‘Theory’ 1. Last time Over the last month we’ve discussed three distinct types of inductive argument. In a strong inductive argument, the conclusion is likely to be true owing to the information provided in the premises. Part of the reason inductive arguments are probabilistic is because the information provided by the conclusion goes beyond the information provided by the premises. The first two kinds of inductive argument we looked at were enumerative and analogical. These two inductive arguments are defined by their form; each represents a specific and common pattern of reasoning. The third kind of inductive argument we looked at is defined by its substance. Causal arguments are always inductive and always assert a conclusion that identifies the cause of some effect. At the end of last class, we started to talk about a fourth kind of inductive argument that is defined by both its form and substance, i.e., Inference to the Best Explanation. The substantive element of these types of inductive argument is a result of these arguments incorporating explanations. Recall that whereas arguments use reason as a means of convincing you to accept some claim as true, explanations do not seek to convince… they seek merely to articulate why or how something is the case. Recall also that every explanation has two parts: i. The explanandum: The object/event/state of affairs to be explained.
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ii. The explanans: The statement(s) that do the explaining. Last time we talked about four different kinds of explanation, only one of which is going to be really important for our purposes. a. Teleological Explanations: Explanations made by referencing the goal/purpose of the explanandum. e.g., I skipped down the street down the street to show I was happy the warm weather had arrived. b. Interpretive Explanations: Explanations made by referencing the meaning conveyed by the explanandum. e.g., By skipping down the street I was signalling my happiness at the arrival of the warm weather. c. Procedural Explanations: Explanations made by referencing the
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PHILO1200LecJan30 - Philosophy 1200 Friday January 30th...

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