Brad Rives, Department of Philosophy, published a paper titled “Laws, the Inference Problem, and Uninstantiated Universals” in the December 2014 issue of the Southern Journal of Philosophy.
difficulties facing Humean regularity accounts of laws have led some
philosophers to a theory that takes laws to be necessitation relations
between universals. In this paper I evaluate David Armstrong's version
of this theory by considering two of its key elements: its solution to
the so-called “Inference Problem” and its denial of uninstantiated
universals. After considering some potential problems with each of these
elements on their own, I argue that Armstrong's solution to the
Inference Problem and his denial of uninstantiated universals are not
two independent aspects of his view. His solution to the Inference
Problem depends upon his denial of uninstantiated universals.
Department of Philosophy