Nancy Cartwright, June 24, 1944-Present

  • Hired at Stanford University

    In 1973 Nancy Cartwright is hired at Stanford University to teach Philosophy of Science. Two years before Ian Hacking, both of which became critical figures in establishing the "Stanford School" of Scientific Philosophy. Her philosophy centered around a more experimental approach to science counter to the rising theoretical science becoming more prominent.
  • How the Laws of Physics Lie

    In her first published book Nancy Cartwright focuses on Scientific Realism, the view that the universe science reveals is real regardless of how one interprets it, and Causality, the idea that an event (or other cause) is responsible for the effect. I.e. event A causes effect B. Cartwright, Nancy. How the Laws of Physics Lie. Oxford University PressOxford, 9 June 1983. Crossref, doi:10.1093/0198247044.001.0001.
  • Nature's Capacities and Their Measurements

    Nancy Cartwright's second book expands on her views of causality, expanding them to the experimental realm of science. She specifically interrogates the theoretical and probabilistic realms of science and their reliabilities, arguing for a much more empirical approach to science where results are definitive and repeatable. As the title suggests she addresses the challenges with measuring capacities in nature. Cartwright, Nancy. Nature’s Capacities and Their Measurement. Clarendon Press, 1989.
  • The Dappled World: A Study of the Boundaries of Science

    Cartwright's third major publication focuses on how scientific laws are used, and the stipulations associated with them. She argues against the idea of a single unifying theory and examines how some observed truths are definitive, others are mostly true, while some act in unique ways. She also explores the crossover of these trends between physical and social sciences. Cartwright, Nancy. The Dappled World: A Study of the Boundaries of Science. Cambridge University Press, 1999.
  • Hunting Causes and Using Them Approaches in Philosophy and Economics

    In her fourth book Cartwright performs a more in depth exploration of Causation. Particularly of note is how she examines the gap between causal identification and their uses, and what to do with a claim once it's established. She also explores the variety of causal relationships. Cartwright, Nancy. Hunting Causes and Using Them: Approaches in Philosophy and Economics. Cambridge University Press, 2007.
  • Philosophy in the Earthly Plane