June 10, 2013 · 7:00 PM
This location is shown only to members
Consilience, or "abudction," are what philosophers call an important way of reasoning: inference to the best explanation. Arguably, it was what Sherlock Holmes deployed (despite Conan Doyle's use of the improper term "deduction" for Holmes' modus operandi), and it is the foundation of modern scientific thinking. Yet, consilience is a surprisingly controversial concept, sometimes misapplied by scientists themselves. Join us for a discussion of what inference to the best explanation is and is not, unusually featuring two background readings: a short article in Philosophy Now, and a longer essay by our host, Massimo Pigliucci, published in Aeon magazine.