Reutlinger, Alexander and Colyvan, Mark and Krzyzanowska, Karolina (2020) The Prospects for a Monist Theory of NonCausal Explanation in Science and Mathematics. [Preprint]

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Abstract
We explore the prospects of a monist account of explanation for both noncausal explanations in science and pure mathematics. Our starting point is the counterfactual theory of explanation (CTE) for explanations in science, as advocated in the recent literature on explanation. We argue that, despite the obvious differences between mathematical and scientific explanation, the CTE can be extended to cover both noncausal explanations in science and mathematical explanations. In particular, a successful application of the CTE to mathematical explanations requires us to rely on counterpossibles. We conclude that the CTE is a promising candidate for a monist account of explanation in both science and mathematics.
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Item Type:  Preprint  

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Additional Information:  forthcoming in Erkenntnis  
Keywords:  Explanation; noncausal explanation; mathematical explanation; counterfactuals; counterpossibles; impossible worlds; explanatory monism; mathematics; philosophy of mathematics  
Subjects:  Specific Sciences > Mathematics > Explanation General Issues > Explanation Specific Sciences > Mathematics General Issues > Philosophers of Science 

Depositing User:  Alexander Reutlinger  
Date Deposited:  21 Feb 2020 18:30  
Last Modified:  21 Feb 2020 18:30  
Item ID:  16933  
Subjects:  Specific Sciences > Mathematics > Explanation General Issues > Explanation Specific Sciences > Mathematics General Issues > Philosophers of Science 

Date:  2020  
URI:  https://philsciarchive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/16933 
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