This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of the book. This book explores the relationship between functional and mechanistic explanations. Steve Petersen thinks about conjunctive explanations through the lens of another philosophical account of explanation, the “patternist” (or unificationist) account. Even granting a monistic approach to this single account, Petersen defends the possibility of there being multiple, overlapping patterns in a given data set, which all appropriately correspond to distinct explanations of a single phenomenon on the given view. Leah Henderson argues against a recent trend in the literature, which allows for the possibility of logically consistent but competing hypotheses. Applying her “hierarchical view of theory comparison,” she argues that competing hypotheses that may appear to be consistent at one level always correspond at another level to mutually exclusive alternatives.
|Title of host publication||Conjunctive Explanations|
|Subtitle of host publication||The Nature, Epistemology, and Psychology of Explanatory Multiplicity|
|Place of Publication||New York|
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published (in print/issue) - 12 May 2023|
|Name||Routledge Studies in the Philosophy of Science|