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What Functions Explain : Functional Explanation and Self-Reproducing Systems - Peter McLaughlin

What Functions Explain

Functional Explanation and Self-Reproducing Systems

Hardcover Published: 6th July 2001
ISBN: 9780521782333
Number Of Pages: 272

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This book offers an examination of functional explanation as it is used in biology and the social sciences, and focuses on the kinds of philosophical presuppositions that such explanations carry with them. McLaughlin gives a critical review of the debate on functional explanation in the philosophy of science that has occurred over the past fifty years. He discusses the history of the philosophical question of teleology, and provides a comprehensive review of the postwar literature on functional explanation. The book provides a sophisticated and detailed Aristotelian analysis of our concept of natural functions, and offers a positive contribution to the ongoing debate on the topic.

Industry Reviews

'McLaughlin has given us an original and daring account of functional explanation ... [his] fascinating account of organisms as self-maintaining systems is important ...' Acta Biotheoretica

Functions and Intentions
The problem of teleology
Intentions and the functions of artifacts
The Analysis of Functional Explanation
Basic positions in philosophy of science: Hempel and Nagel
The etiological view
The dispositional view
Self-Reproducing Systems
Artifacts and organisms
Feedback mechanisms and their beneficiaries
Having a good
What functions explain
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521782333
ISBN-10: 0521782333
Series: Cambridge Studies in Philosophy & Biology
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 272
Published: 6th July 2001
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.11 x 15.75  x 2.03
Weight (kg): 0.5

Earn 526 Qantas Points
on this Book