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Belief Beyond Causal Interaction

Allzén, Simon (2020) Belief Beyond Causal Interaction. [Preprint]

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Scientific realists offer different accounts of when it is rationally warranted to be- lieve in the existence of entities postulated in science. Some argue that in order to avoid speculative metaphysics, the epistemic line must be drawn at the point of causal interaction, yielding beliefs about the entities we are causally connected with in a par- ticular way. Others claim that explanatory power is enough to warrant belief, and that we ought to accept the existence of whatever entities that best explains our observa- tions. The distinction between explanationists and what we may call ’detectionists’ can be illuminated by considering the evidence and reasoning permeating many cases in astronomy and cosmology. In this paper, I present two such cases that disfavour the detectionist account of normative belief and favor the explanationist. Cosmology and astronomy provide a rich scientific context in which we can test the plausibility of accounts for rational belief given by philosophers of science. I argue that the account of rational belief given by detectionism is made implausible when applied in this context.

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Item Type: Preprint
Keywords: Scientific realism, Cosmology, Explanationism, dark matter
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Cosmology
General Issues > Realism/Anti-realism
Depositing User: Dr Simon Allzén
Date Deposited: 08 May 2020 23:01
Last Modified: 08 May 2020 23:01
Item ID: 17156
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Cosmology
General Issues > Realism/Anti-realism
Date: 8 May 2020

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