Explaining explanation in chemistry

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The notion that explanations are arguments, central to the covering law account, persists in developments of accounts of explanation in general philosophy of science. I argue that these developments fail to capture chemical explanation-motivating the explanatory autonomy of chemistry requires the investigation of alternative accounts. Ubiquitous use of models in chemistry is indicative of their importance to explanation. I argue that contemporary accounts of models that emphasize their partial autonomy from fundamental physical laws provide a basis for investigating explanation in chemistry. Furthermore, I sketch the importance of the semantic view of theories in articulating model autonomy, and thus why the semantic view might fulfill a significant role in explicating the explanatory autonomy of chemistry.
Publisher
NEW YORK ACAD SCIENCES
Issue Date
2003-05
Language
English
Article Type
Article; Proceedings Paper
Citation

CHEMICAL EXPLANATION: CHARACTERISTICS, DEVELOPMENT, AUTONOMY, v.988, pp.16 - 21

ISSN
0077-8923
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10203/224587
Appears in Collection
STP-Journal Papers(저널논문)
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