This course is co-taught with Marcel Weber and Raphael Scholl.

In this seminar we shall treat several issues that are at the center of attention in contemporary philosophy of science. In the autumn semester, we shall focus on two sets of issues. First, we will consider the role of laws of nature and their analysis in philosophy of science, particularly through two recent proposals. Second, we will discuss the hotly debated relationship between science and metaphysics. For the spring semester, we plan to first discuss the philosophy of chemistry and various issues arising in its context (such as laws, natural kinds, realism, explanation). Finally, we would like to enter the recent debate on how to explain scientific success.

Course Materials

Course materials such as lecture notes, handouts, etc may be made available as they will be used in class.

Presentation slides:

The following materials are strongly recommended for this course:

  • Marc Lange, Laws and Lawmakers: Science, Metaphysics and the Laws of Nature. Oxford: Oxford University Press 2009.
  • John Roberts, The Law-Governed Universe. Oxford: Oxford University Press 2008.
  • More materials will be made available on Chamilo.

Schedule (Fall 2016)

This is the schedule for the seminar. It is subject to adjustment.

Date Readings Presenter(s)
21.09. Introduction Instructors
28.09. Lange, Ch. 1 Joshua Babic
05.10. Lange, Ch. 2 Jakob Ohlhost
12.10. Lange, Ch. 3 Lorenzo Cocco
19.10. Lange, Ch. 4 Michal Hladky
26.10. Roberts, Ch. 1 Baptiste Le Bihan
02.11. Roberts, Ch. 7 Augustin Baas
09.11. No seminar (semaine d'études)
16.11. Roberts, Ch. 8 Niels Linnemann
23.11. Roberts, Ch. 9 George Tsimploulis
30.11. Hawley, Science as a guide to metaphysics Lorenzo Cocco
07.12. Paul, Metaphysics as modeling Karen Crowther
14.12. Callender, Metaphysics and philosophy of science Jakob Ohlhost
21.12. French and McKenzie, Rethinking outside the toolbox Joshua Babic