Paul Horwich

Paul Horwich is Associate Professor of Philosophy at MIT.

  • World Changes

    World Changes

    Thomas Kuhn and the Nature of Science

    Paul Horwich

    Thomas Kuhn is perhaps the most widely known and influential philosopher of science of our time. Inspired by his contributions, these twelve original essays address central aspects of Kuhn's thought

    Thomas Kuhn is perhaps the most widely known and influential philosopher of science of our time. His book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions called into question such central notions of scientific method as the concept of absolute truth, the observation/theory distinction, the determinate rationality of theory choice, and the normative function of philosophy of science. Kuhn's critique turned several fields upside down and continues to be read and debated not only by philosophers and historians of science but also by many practicing scientists. Inspired by his contributions, these twelve original essays address central aspects of Kuhn's thought. Most of the essays are philosophical, four are primarily historical, and one, by Kuhn himself, responds to issues raised in the other essays.

    • Hardcover $47.50
    • Paperback $22.95
  • Asymmetries In Time

    Asymmetries In Time

    Problems in the Philosophy of Science

    Paul Horwich

    Time is generally thought to be one of the more mysterious ingredients of the universe. In this intriguing book, Paul Horwich makes precise and explicit the interrelationships between time and a large number of philosophically important notions. Ideas of temporal order and priority interact in subtle and convoluted ways with the deepest elements in our network of basic concepts. Confronting this conceptual jigsaw puzzle, Horwich notes that there are glaring differences in how we regard the past and future directions of time. For example, we can influence the future but not the past, and can easily gain knowledge of the past but not of the future. Moreover we see a profusion of decay processes but little spontaneous generation of order; time appears to "flow" in one privileged direction, not the other; and we tend to explain phenomena in terms of antecedent circumstances, rather than subsequent ones. Horwich explains such time asymmetries and examines their bearing on the nature of time itself. Asymmetries in Time covers many notoriously difficult problems in the philosophy of science: causation, knowledge, entropy, explanation, time travel, rational choice (including Newcomb's problem), laws of nature, and counterfactual implication—and gives a unified treatment of these matters. The book covers an unusually broad range of topics in a lucid and nontechnical way and includes alternative points of view in the philosophical literature.

    • Hardcover
    • Paperback $30.00

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  • The Nature of Truth, Second Edition

    The Nature of Truth, Second Edition

    Classic and Contemporary Perspectives

    Michael P. Lynch, Jeremy Wyatt, Junyeol Kim, and Nathan Kellen

    The definitive and essential collection of classic and new essays on analytic theories of truth, revised and updated, with seventeen new chapters.

    The question “What is truth?” is so philosophical that it can seem rhetorical. Yet truth matters, especially in a “post-truth” society in which lies are tolerated and facts are ignored. If we want to understand why truth matters, we first need to understand what it is. The Nature of Truth offers the definitive collection of classic and contemporary essays on analytic theories of truth. This second edition has been extensively revised and updated, incorporating both historically central readings on truth's nature as well as up-to-the-moment contemporary essays. Seventeen new chapters reflect the current trajectory of research on truth.

    Highlights include new essays by Ruth Millikan and Gila Sher on correspondence theories; a new essay on Peirce's theory by Cheryl Misak; seven new essays on deflationism, laying out both theories and critiques; a new essay by Jamin Asay on primitivist theories; and a new defense by Kevin Scharp of his replacement theory, coupled with a probing critique of replacement theories by Alexis Burgess. Classic essays include selections by J. L. Austin, Donald Davidson, William James, W. V. O. Quine, and Alfred Tarski.

    • Paperback $65.00