Philosophy of Physics

Author: Lawrence Sklar

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0198751389

Category: Physics

Page: 246

View: 4128

This accessible and engaging book gives a broad overview of contemporary philosophy of physics.

Appearance and Reality

An Introduction to the Philosophy of Physics

Author: Peter Kosso

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780195115154

Category: Philosophy

Page: 196

View: 4328

Appearance and Reality: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Physics addresses quantum mechanics and relativity and their philosophical implications, focusing on whether these theories of modern physics can help us know nature as it really is, or only as it appears to us. The author clearly explains the foundational concepts and principles of both quantum mechanics and relativity and then uses them to argue that we can know more than mere appearances, and that we can know to some extent the way things really are. He argues that modern physics gives us reason to believe that we can know some things about the objective, real world, but he also acknowledges that we cannot know everything, which results in a position he calls "realistic realism." This book is not a survey of possible philosophical interpretations of modern physics, nor does it leap from a caricature of the physics to some wildly alarming metaphysics. Instead, it is careful with the physics and true to the evidence in arriving at its own realistic conclusions. It presents the physics without mathematics, and makes extensive use of diagrams and analogies to explain important ideas. Engaging and accessible, Appearance and Reality serves as an ideal introduction for anyone interested in the intersection of philosophy and physics, including students in philosophy of physics and philosophy of science courses.

The Philosophy of Physics

Author: Roberto Torretti

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521565714

Category: Philosophy

Page: 512

View: 479

Pursues the development of physics from Galileo and Newton to Einstein and the founders of quantum mechanics.

Philosophy of Physics

Space and Time

Author: Tim Maudlin

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 0691143099

Category: Philosophy

Page: 183

View: 5217

Introduces non-physicists to core philosophical issues surrounding the nature & structure of space & time, & is also an ideal resource for physicists interested in the conceptual foundations of space-time theory. Provides a broad historical overview, from Aristotle to Einstein, & covers the Twins Paradox, Galilean relativity, time travel, & more.

The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Physics

Author: Robert Batterman

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0195392043

Category: Philosophy

Page: 688

View: 1192

This Oxford Handbook provides an overview of many of the topics that currently engage philosophers of physics. It surveys new issues and the problems that have become a focus of attention in recent years. It also provides up-to-date discussions of the still very important problems that dominated the field in the past. In the late 20th Century, the philosophy of physics was largely focused on orthodox Quantum Mechanics and Relativity Theory. The measurement problem, the question of the possibility of hidden variables, and the nature of quantum locality dominated the literature on the quantum mechanics, whereas questions about relationalism vs. substantivalism, and issues about underdetermination of theories dominated the literature on spacetime. These issues still receive considerable attention from philosophers, but many have shifted their attentions to other questions related to quantum mechanics and to spacetime theories. Quantum field theory has become a major focus, particularly from the point of view of algebraic foundations. Concurrent with these trends, there has been a focus on understanding gauge invariance and symmetries. The philosophy of physics has evolved even further in recent years with attention being paid to theories that, for the most part, were largely ignored in the past. For example, the relationship between thermodynamics and statistical mechanics—-once thought to be a paradigm instance of unproblematic theory reduction—-is now a hotly debated topic. The implicit, and sometimes explicit, reductionist methodology of both philosophers and physicists has been severely criticized and attention has now turned to the explanatory and descriptive roles of "non-fundamental,'' phenomenological theories. This shift of attention includes "old'' theories such as classical mechanics, once deemed to be of little philosophical interest. Furthermore, some philosophers have become more interested in "less fundamental'' contemporary physics such as condensed matter theory. Questions abound with implications for the nature of models, idealizations, and explanation in physics. This Handbook showcases all these aspects of this complex and dynamic discipline.

The Philosophy of Physics

Author: Dean Rickles

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1509509402

Category: Science

Page: 212

View: 9111

Does the future exist already? What is space? Are time machines physically possible? What is quantum mechanical reality like? Are there many universes? Is there a ‘true’ geometry of the universe? Why does there appear to be an arrow of time? Do humans play a special role in the world? In this unique introductory book, Dean Rickles guides the reader through these and other core questions that keep philosophers of physics up at night. He discusses the three pillars of modern physics (quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics, and the theories of relativity), in addition to more cutting-edge themes such as econophysics, quantum gravity, quantum computers, and gauge theories. The book’s approach is based on the idea that philosophy of physics is a kind of ‘interpretation game’ in which we try to map physical theories onto our world. But the rules of this game often lead to a multiplicity of possible victors: rarely do we encounter a simple answer. The Philosophy of Physics offers a highly accessible introduction to the latest developments in this exciting field. Written in a lively style, with many visual examples, it will appeal to beginner-level students in both physics and philosophy.

The Philosophy Behind Physics

Author: Thomas A. Brody

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3642789781

Category: Science

Page: 355

View: 6520

Thomas Brody had one of the most powerful and wide-ranging intellects of his generation. Although primarily a physicist who worked on statistical prob lems in nuclear physics, on probability theory and on computational physics he had an extensive knowledge of the philosophy of science and of philosophy, and was fluent in many languages. He is well-known among physicists for the Brody-Moshinsky transformation but his extensive work on probability and on the philosophy of science remained almost unknown. This was because the originality of his ideas entailed many lengthy battles with uncomprehending referees, and he frequently published in Mexican journals of limited circula tion. In addition, his strongly critical spirit inhibited his willingness to publish his ideas. He was always most concerned by the very unsatisfactory situation in the philosophy of physics, that is largely due to the generally poor knowledge that physicists and philosophers have of each other's disciplines. Philosophers of science write at length about physics without any detailed first-hand knowl edge of how research is actually carried out. Physicists, for their part, often implicitly assume naive or erroneous philosophical ideas, and this often hinders their scientific work, besides spreading further confusion if they try to give an account of what they are doing.

The Ashgate Companion to Contemporary Philosophy of Physics

Author: Dean Rickles

Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.

ISBN: 9780754655183

Category: Philosophy

Page: 386

View: 6701

Introducing the reader to the very latest developments in the philosophical foundations of physics, this book covers advanced material at a level suitable for beginner and intermediate students. A detailed overview is provided of the central debates in the philosophy of quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics, quantum computation, and quantum gravity. This book enables both philosophers and physicists to engage with the most pressing problems in contemporary philosophy of physics in a fruitful way.

Niels Bohr and the Philosophy of Physics

Twenty-First-Century Perspectives

Author: Jan Faye,Henry Folse

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1350035114

Category: Philosophy

Page: 392

View: 394

"The sixteen contributions in this collection by some of the best contemporary philosophers and physicists writing on Bohr's philosophy today all carefully distinguish his subtle and unique interpretation of quantum mechanics from views often imputed to him under the banner of the "Copenhagen Interpretation.""--Page 4 de la couverture.

Between Rationalism and Empiricism

Selected Papers in the Philosophy of Physics

Author: Erhard Scheibe

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 1461301831

Category: Science

Page: 627

View: 4611

Scheibe is one of the most important philosophers of science in Germany. He has written extensively on all the problems that confront the philosophy of physics: rationalism vs. empiricism; reductionism; the foundations of quantum mechanics; space-time, and much more. Since little of his work has been translated into English, he is not yet well known internationally. However, this collection of some 40 of his papers will remedy this unfortunate situation.

An Introduction to the Philosophy of Physics

Locality, Fields, Energy, and Mass

Author: Marc Lange

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

ISBN: 9780631225010

Category: Science

Page: 344

View: 7222

This book combines physics, philosophy, and history in a radical new approach to introducing the philosophy of physics. It leads the reader through several central problems in the philosophy of physics by tracing their connections to a single issue: whether a cause must be spatiotemporally local to its effect, or whether action at a distance can occur

Niels Bohr's Philosophy of Physics

Author: D. R. Murdoch

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521379274

Category: Science

Page: 294

View: 401

Murdoch describes the historical background of the physics from which Bohr's ideas grew; he traces the origins of his idea of complementarity and discusses its meaning and significance. Special emphasis is placed on the contrasting views of Einstein, and the great debate between Bohr and Einstein is thoroughly examined. Bohr's philosophy is revealed as being much more subtle, and more interesting than is generally acknowledged.

The Philosophy of Quantum Physics

Author: Cord Friebe,Meinard Kuhlmann,Holger Lyre,Paul M. Näger,Oliver Passon,Manfred Stöckler

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 3319783564

Category: Science

Page: 291

View: 6044

This book provides a thorough and up-to-date introduction to the philosophy of quantum physics. Although quantum theory is renowned for its spectacular empirical successes, controversial discussion about how it should be understood continue to rage today. In this volume, the authors provide an overview of its numerous philosophical challenges: Do quantum objects violate the principle of causality? Are particles of the same type indistinguishable and therefore not individual entities? Do quantum objects retain their identity over time? How does a compound quantum system relate to its parts? These questions are answered here within different interpretational approaches to quantum theory. Finally, moving to Quantum Field Theory, we find that the problem of non-locality is exacerbated. Philosophy of quantum physics is aimed at philosophers with an interest in physics, while also serving to familiarize physicists with many of the essential philosophical questions of their subject.

Philosophy of Physics

Quantum Theory

Author: Tim Maudlin

Publisher: Princeton Foundations of Conte

ISBN: 9780691183527

Category: Philosophy

Page: 256

View: 6720

A sophisticated and original introduction to the philosophy of quantum mechanics from one of the world's leading philosophers of physics In this book, Tim Maudlin, one of the world's leading philosophers of physics, offers a sophisticated, original introduction to the philosophy of quantum mechanics. The briefest, clearest, and most refined account of his influential approach to the subject, the book will be invaluable to all students of philosophy and physics. Quantum mechanics holds a unique place in the history of physics. It has produced the most accurate predictions of any scientific theory, but, more astonishing, there has never been any agreement about what the theory implies about physical reality. Maudlin argues that the very term "quantum theory" is a misnomer. A proper physical theory should clearly describe what is there and what it does--yet standard textbooks present quantum mechanics as a predictive recipe in search of a physical theory. In contrast, Maudlin explores three proper theories that recover the quantum predictions: the indeterministic wavefunction collapse theory of Ghirardi, Rimini, and Weber; the deterministic particle theory of deBroglie and Bohm; and the conceptually challenging Many Worlds theory of Everett. Each offers a radically different proposal for the nature of physical reality, but Maudlin shows that none of them are what they are generally taken to be.

Physics and Philosophy

The Revolution in Modern Science

Author: Werner Heisenberg

Publisher: Penguin Modern Classics

ISBN: 9780141182155

Category: Physics

Page: 176

View: 4278

Nobel Prize winner Werner Heisenberg's classic account explains the central ideas of the quantum revolution, and his celebrated Uncertainty Principle. The theme of Heisenberg's exposition is that words and concepts familiar in daily life can lose their meaning in the world of relativity and quantum physics. This in turn has profound philosophical implications for the nature of reality and for our total world view. 'It carries the reader, with remarkable clarity, from the esoteric world of atomic physics to the world of people, language and the conception of our shared reality' Paul Davies.

Philosophical Concepts in Physics

The Historical Relation between Philosophy and Scientific Theories

Author: James T. Cushing

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521578233

Category: Science

Page: 448

View: 344

This book examines a selection of philosophical issues in the context of specific episodes in the development of physical theories and presents scientific advances within their historical and philosophical contexts. Philosophical considerations have played an essential and ineliminable role in the actual practice of science. The book begins with some necessary introduction to the history of ancient and early modern science, but emphasizes the two great watersheds of twentieth-century physics: relativity and quantum mechanics. At times the term "construction" may seem more appropriate than "discovery" for the way theories have developed and, especially in later chapters, the discussion focuses on the influence of historical, philosophical and even social factors on the form and content of scientific theories.

The Direction of Time

Author: Hans Reichenbach

Publisher: Courier Corporation

ISBN: 0486137252

Category: Science

Page: 304

View: 5602

Distinguished physicist examines emotive significance of time, time order of mechanics, time direction of thermodynamics and microstatistics, time direction of macrostatistics, time of quantum physics, more. 1971 edition.

An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science

Author: Rudolf Carnap

Publisher: Courier Corporation

ISBN: 0486140865

Category: Science

Page: 336

View: 5686

Stimulating, thought-provoking text by one of the 20th century's most creative philosophers makes accessible such topics as probability, measurement and quantitative language, causality and determinism, theoretical laws and concepts, more.

From Physics to Philosophy

Author: Jeremy Butterfield,Constantine Pagonis

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521660259

Category: Philosophy

Page: 235

View: 750

These essays by leading philosophers of physics offer philosophical perspectives on quantum theory and relativity.