Mathematical Explanation Beyond Explanatory Proof
 Citation data:

The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science
 Publication Year:
 2017
 Most Recent Tweet View All Tweets
article description
Abstract Much recent work on mathematical explanation has presupposed that the phenomenon involves explanatory proofs in an essential way. I argue that this view, ‘proof chauvinism’, is false. I then look in some detail at the explanation of the solvability of polynomial equations provided by Galois theory, which has often been thought to revolve around an explanatory proof. The paper concludes with some general worries about the effects of chauvinism on the theory of mathematical explanation.