A Companion to David Lewis (Blackwell Companions to by Barry Loewer, Jonathan Schaffer

By Barry Loewer, Jonathan Schaffer

In A spouse to David Lewis, Barry Loewer and Jonathan Schaffer assemble best philosophers to provide an explanation for, talk about, and severely expand Lewis’s seminal paintings in unique methods. scholars and students will detect the underlying issues and complicated interconnections woven during the different diversity of his paintings in metaphysics, philosophy of language, common sense, epistemology, philosophy of technological know-how, philosophy of brain, ethics, and aesthetics.
The first and purely finished learn of the paintings of David Lewis, the most systematic and influential philosophers of the latter half the twentieth century
Contributions make clear the underlying subject matters and intricate interconnections woven via Lewis’s paintings throughout his huge, immense diversity of impact, together with metaphysics, language, common sense, epistemology, technological know-how, brain, ethics, and aesthetics
Outstanding Lewis students and top philosophers operating within the fields Lewis inspired clarify, talk about, and significantly expand Lewis’s paintings in unique ways
An crucial source for college students and researchers throughout analytic philosophy that covers the most important issues of Lewis’s paintings

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Extra resources for A Companion to David Lewis (Blackwell Companions to Philosophy)

Sample text

If we all started in roughly similar “pre-theoretic” states of nature, for example, Adam might already have had to move Belle a long way from her starting point to get her to B2. Or perhaps Belle is only permitted to move so far from B1 because she lacks a lot of reasons and evidence that those who have been to B1 possess; maybe there must be some epistemic advantage Adam and Carl have that she lacks (despite holding Adam and Carl’s views at the beginning of her inquiry), and it is this advantage Carl has that makes it irrational to follow Belle’s course.

Here is perhaps not the place to consider every feasible response a Lewisian conservative might offer, though any of these would need significant fleshing out if we are to be convinced that Belle may go where Carl cannot after they both endorse B2. There are other uncomfortable questions that face the Lewisian conservative. We unfreeze Oog from the ice she has been trapped in since the Pleistocene. How close may we bring her to contemporary opinions in physics, economics, or philosophy through evidence and argument, if we want her to be able to rationally believe things we know?

Lewis was not alone in this: many contemporary philosophers will pay at least lip service to the idea that what must be done when deciding a philosophical issue is to weigh up costs and benefits of rival philosophical views. Perhaps because this is such a widespread idiom, it seems worthwhile paying closer attention to the role this played in Lewis’s philosophy. What is it to weigh up costs and benefits of a theory? What is a cost, what is a benefit, and how is the weighing to be done?

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