• Difference-making grounds
    Stephan Krämer and Stefan Roski
    Philosophical Studies 174 (5): 1191-1215. 2017.
    We define a notion of difference-making for partial grounds of a fact in rough analogy to existing notions of difference-making for causes of an event. Using orthodox assumptions about ground, we show that it induces a non-trivial division with examples of partial grounds on both sides. We then demonstrate the theoretical fruitfulness of the notion by applying it to the analysis of a certain kind of putative counter-example to the transitivity of ground recently described by Jonathan Schaffer. F…Read more
  • Against explanatory realism
    Philosophical Studies 175 (1): 197-219. 2018.
    Explanatory realism is the position that all explanations give information about whatever metaphysically determines the explanandum. This view is popular and plays a central role in metaphysics, but in this paper I argue that explanatory realism is false. In Sect. 1 I introduce explanatory realism in its weak and strong versions, and discuss the argumentative work that explanatory realism is used for in contemporary metaphysics. In Sect. 2 I present a series of problem cases for explanatory real…Read more
  • Essentialist Explanation
    Philosophical Studies 174 (11): 2871-2889. 2017.
    Recent years have seen an explosion of interest in metaphysical explanation, and philosophers have fixed on the notion of ground as the conceptual tool with which such explanation should be investigated. I will argue that this focus on ground is myopic and that some metaphysical explanations that involve the essences of things cannot be understood in terms of ground. Such ‘essentialist’ explanation is of interest, not only for its ubiquity in philosophy, but for its being in a sense an ultimate …Read more
  • Laws and the Completeness of the Fundamental
    In Mark Jago (ed.), Reality Making, Oxford University Press. pp. 11-37. 2016.
    Any explanation of one fact in terms of another will appeal to some sort of connection between the two. In a causal explanation, the connection might be a causal mechanism or law. But not all explanations are causal, and neither are all explanatory connections. For example, in explaining the fact that a given barn is red in terms of the fact that it is crimson, we might appeal to a non-causal connection between things’ being crimson and their being red. Many such connections, like this one, are …Read more