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Enzo Rossi

I'm working on a methodological critique of invisible hand arguments that draws heavily on anthropology, archeology, and economic history. But I only know a handful of other people interested in this sort of thing. It's tough because contemporary normative political theory is in love with conditional arguments, which are designed to isolate it from the facts (but they sometime fail to do so, or so I try to argue).

In philosophy of science it may be more of a matter of studying sciences with clear predictive empirical successes (in fact I think there's quite a lot of stuff on archeology). But there's also a resurgence of work in social ontology and other relevant bits of metaphysics, and it's odd that not more of it is couched as PoSocialScience. Ruth Groff's work may be a splendid exception.

Anna Alexandrova

All I am going to say is see below:

Session 5 (4:00 PM - 6:00 PM)
Contributed Papers: Methodology in the Social Sciences
Huron B – Level 2

Rosa Willemijn Runhardt (London School
of Economics): Evidence for Causal
Mechanisms in Social Science: Recommen
dations from Woodward's Manipulability
Theory of Causation

Robert Northcott (Birkbeck College, London): Opinion Polling and Election

Alexandre Marcellesi (University of California, San Diego): External Validity: Is There
Still a Problem?

Chiara Lisciandra (Tint Centre of Excellence in the Philosophy of the Social Sciences):
Robustness Analysis as a Non-empirical Confirmatory Practice
Chair: Wenceslao J. Gonzalez (University of A Coruña, Spain)

Eric Schliesser

Dear Anna,
My post is not a criticism of the PSA or its very fine program committee! (My only complaint is that the session you mention was programmed at the same time as one of the Newton sessions!) But even that session -- and the PSA is a HUGE conference -- does not engage with some of the historically neglected social sciences.
Anyway, the point of the post is to get a conversation started about the sources of neglect--not to fingerpoint at any group.


I have found that a good way to test any general claim in the philosophy of science is to try to apply it to comparative philology, "the only exact science in the humanities."

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Here's a link to my past blogging (and discussions involving me) at: New APPS.


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