Alison Fernandes: Three Accounts of Laws and Time

Alison Fernandes (Trinity)
4-6pm Wednesday Oct 24; room 125, 7 E 12th Street (NYU)

Title: Three Accounts of Laws and Time.
Abstract: Loewer distinguishes two approaches to laws and time: Humean accounts, which deny primitive modality and explain temporal asymmetries in scientific terms, and non-Humean accounts that take temporal asymmetry and modality to be metaphysically fundamental. I’ll argue that Loewer neglects an important third approach: deny metaphysical claims about fundamentality, and explain temporal asymmetries as well as the function of modal entities in scientific terms. This pragmatist approach provides a clear ontology to science, and, and unlike the other two accounts, doesn’t use metaphysics in place of scientific explanation.

There will be dinner after the talk. If you are interested, please send an email with “Dinner” in the heading to (please note that all are welcome, but only the speaker’s dinner will be covered). If you have any other questions, please email

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