There are no probabilistic Generics with stative verbs

In Good and Bad examples of probabilistic generics, I suggested that (1) is an example of a probabilistic generic. (1) Women have care-giving jobs. If that were right, then the thesis in the title would However, there is also a very general argument that there are no probabilistic generics with stative verbs, like having a … Continue reading There are no probabilistic Generics with stative verbs

The Intuition underlying Normality in the Probabilistic Case

Suppose I construct normality in the context of probabilistic generics along the lines outlined here: (Normality in Probabilistic Generics). That's a purely formal construction, suggesting some kind of division among cells in a partition that reflects combinations of other causal factors potentially at play. What's the distinction that the purely formal distinction is supposed to … Continue reading The Intuition underlying Normality in the Probabilistic Case

Normality for Probabilistic Generics (Superseded)

(Edit: I've come to realize that what I wrote here is confused. Here's a better attempt at understanding what's going on.) Thinking through how normality fits into probabilistic generics shows that there are a lot of different ways of mixing normality and probabilistic explanation. It's important to get this right when thinking about the logic … Continue reading Normality for Probabilistic Generics (Superseded)

Probabilistic Explanation

Strevens in a useful overview article ("Probabilistic Explanation") mentions three reasons to think about probabilistic explanation. The phenomena might be fundamentally indeterministic (as in QM) We might be epistemically limited, as in medical contexts where we don't know about the specific mechanisms. The probabilistic explanation might be superior to the mechanistic one, as in statistical … Continue reading Probabilistic Explanation