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Overview

Mumford outlines a major new theory of natural laws. His book begins with the question of whether there are any genuinely law-like phenomena in nature. The discussion addresses questions currently being debated by metaphysicians such as whether the laws of nature are necessary or contingent and whether a property can be identified independently of its causal role.
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Laws in Nature

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Overview

Mumford outlines a major new theory of natural laws. His book begins with the question of whether there are any genuinely law-like phenomena in nature. The discussion addresses questions currently being debated by metaphysicians such as whether the laws of nature are necessary or contingent and whether a property can be identified independently of its causal role.
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Stephen Mumford is Reader in Metaphysics in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Nottingham. He is the author of Dispositions (1998) and various papers in metaphysics. He is editor of Russell on Metaphysics (2003) and Powers by the late George Molnar (2003).

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Table of Contents

1 Laws in science and philosophy 1
Pt. I Humean lawlessness 19
2 The lawless world 21
3 Regularities and best systems 31
4 Hume's argument 50
Pt. II Nomological realism 65
5 The nomological argument 67
6 Natural necessitation relations 83
7 Necessitarian essentialism 105
Pt. III Realist lawlessness 125
8 Are natural laws a natural kind? 127
9 The central dilemma 143
10 Modal properties 160
11 Objections and replies 182
12 Conclusion : law and metaphor 201
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