Realism, antirealism, epistemic stances, and voluntarism

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Debates between different kinds of scientific realists and antirealists are longstanding and show every sign of continuing. In this chapter I examine one explanation of their longevity: lurking beneath various forms of realism and antirealism are conflicting commitments which (1) sustain these positions and (2) are immune to refutation. These deeper commitments are to different epistemic stances. I consider the nature of philosophical stances generally and, more specifically, of epistemic stances in relation to the sciences. I investigate the question of how stances are evaluated and adopted, and elaborate on the most telling reason for their immunity, namely a form of voluntarism regarding their adoption.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Handbook of Scientific Realism
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781351362917
ISBN (Print)9781138888852
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)


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