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The Distinction Between Physics and Metaphysics in Duhem’s Philosophy

The Distinction Between Physics and Metaphysics in Duhem’s Philosophy

Rogelio Miranda Vilchis, “The Distinction Between Physics and Metaphysics in Duhem’s Philosophy,” Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia 74, no. 1 (2018): 85–114, DOI 10.17990/RPF/2018_74_1_0085

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The Distinction Between Physics and Metaphysics in Duhem’s Philosophy

Type Journal Article
Author Rogelio Miranda Vilchis
Rights © 2018 Aletheia - Associação Científica e Cultural | © 2018 Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia
Volume 74
Issue 1
Pages 85-114
Publication Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia
ISSN 0870-5283
Date 2018
DOI 10.17990/RPF/2018_74_1_0085
Language English
Abstract Pierre Duhem’s philosophy of science has influenced many philosophers in the twentieth century, and even today. Many of the subjects he addressed are still highly discussed today, especially the distinction between science and metaphysics. My aim in this paper will be to motivate a naturalistic approach where the difference between physics and metaphysics is only a matter of degree. I focus on whether it would be possible to articulate this gradual distinction from a duhemian point of view. Although Duhem thought that metaphysics is an entirely different and more excellent activity than physics, I believe that Duhem’s philosophy of science also supports a naturalistic distinction in terms of degrees. I offer three reasons to justify this conclusion: (i) Duhem’s notion of common sense; (ii) Duhem’s holism and his views on the generality of our theories, and (iii) Duhem’s notion of natural classification. At the end of the paper I will argue that a naturalistic approach accomplishes must of what Duhem wanted to achieve with his distinction.
Date Added 26/04/2018, 14:53:43
Modified 26/04/2018, 15:44:04

Tags:

  • metaphysics,
  • Duhem,
  • distinction,
  • gradual,
  • physics

Notes:

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