• Corpus ID: 237572241

Governing Without A Fundamental Direction of Time: Minimal Primitivism about Laws of Nature

  title={Governing Without A Fundamental Direction of Time: Minimal Primitivism about Laws of Nature},
  author={Eddy Keming Chen and Sheldon Goldstein},
The Great Divide in metaphysical debates about laws of nature is between Humeans who think that laws merely describe the distribution of matter and nonHumeans who think that laws govern it. The metaphysics can place demands on the proper formulations of physical theories. It is sometimes assumed that the governing view requires a fundamental / intrinsic direction of time: to govern, laws must be dynamical, producing later states of the world from earlier ones, in accord with the fundamental… 

Figures from this paper

Operational Theories as Structural Realism
We undertake a reconstruction of the epistemic significance of research on operational theories in quantum foundations. We suggest that the space of operational theories is analogous to the space of
Determinism Beyond Time Evolution
Physicists are increasingly beginning to take seriously the possibility of laws which may be non-local, global, atemporal, retrocausal, or in some other way outside the traditional time-evolution
Laws of Nature as Constraints
The laws of nature have come a long way since the time of Newton: quantum mechanics and relativity have given us good reasons to take seriously the possibility of laws which may be non-local,
The Past Hypothesis and the Nature of Physical Laws
If the Past Hypothesis underlies the arrows of time, what is the status of the Past Hypothesis? In this paper, I examine the role of the Past Hypothesis in the Boltzmannian account and defend the


Powerful Properties, Powerless Laws
In debates about the fundamental ontology and the laws of nature, two opposing metaphysical pictures loom large: the Humean picture and the anti-Humean picture. When it comes to the fundamental
How the Laws of Physics Lie.
Nancy Cartwright argues for a novel conception of the role of fundamental scientific laws in modern natural science. If we attend closely to the manner in which theoretical laws figure in the
Mentaculus Laws and Metaphysics
The laws of nature are central to our understanding of the world. And while there is often broad agreement about the technical formulations of the laws, there can be sharp disagreement about the
Laws and Lawmakers: Science, Metaphysics, and the Laws of Nature
Preface CHAPTER 1: LAWS FORM COUNTERFACTUALLY STABLE SETS 1. Welcome 2. Their necessity sets the laws apart 3. The laws's persistence under counterfactuals 4. Nomic preservation 5. Beyond nomic
Derivative Properties in Fundamental Laws
Orthodoxy has it that only metaphysically elite properties can be invoked in scientifically elite laws, but it is argued that this claim does not fit scientific practice, and a deflationary moral about laws themselves, as being merely convenient summaries is drawn.
Laws Are Not Descriptions
The view that takes laws of nature to be essentially nothing more than descriptions of facts is still rather popular. The present article, on the contrary, defends the claim that the only real
The Nature of Laws
It is possible to set out an acceptable, noncircular account of the truth conditions of laws and nomological statements if and only if relations among universals that is, among properties and relations, construed realistically are taken as the truth-makers for such statements.
Minimal Anti-Humeanism
ABSTRACT There is a tension in our theorizing about laws of nature: our practice of using and reasoning with laws of nature suggests that laws are universal generalizations, but if laws are universal
The nomological argument for the existence of God
According to the Nomological Argument, observed regularities in nature are best explained by an appeal to a supernatural being. A successful explanation must avoid two perils. Some explanations
Special sciences (or: The disunity of science as a working hypothesis)
A typical thesis of positivistic philosophy of science is that all true theories in the special sciences should reduce to physical theories in the long run. This is intended to be an empirical