What is it about?

There is broad agreement that academic metaphysics should engage with science (though much disagreement about what should be the nature and extent of that engagement). Even if engagement with science is obviously desirable, it is not obvious precisely what makes it so. This article spells out a possible basis for the preferability of a science-based metaphysics: such a metaphysics is better constrained than its traditional alternatives. The article offers several arguments for the conclusion that relative constraint is an important feature of theories.

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Why is it important?

The reasons for thinking science-based metaphysics is preferable to speculative metaphysics are often left unstated and unexamined; this article explicitly articulates and defends them.


The starting place for this article was my sense that so little pins down speculative analytic metaphysics -- that there are far too many degrees of freedom with regard to the determinate content of speculative metaphysical theories. This article is an attempt to get at the philosophical substance behind that thought.

Amanda Bryant
LanCog Research Group, Centre of Philosophy, University of Lisbon

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This page is a summary of: Epistemic Infrastructure for a Scientific Metaphysics, Grazer Philosophische Studien, May 2020, Brill, DOI: 10.1163/18756735-000096.
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