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  1. Santiago Alvarez, Joaquim Sales & Miquel Seco (2008). On Books and Chemical Elements. Foundations of Chemistry 10 (2):79-100.
    The history of the classification of chemical elements is reviewed from the point of view of a bibliophile. The influence that relevant books had on the development of the periodic table and, conversely, how it was incorporated into textbooks, treatises and literary works, with an emphasis on the Spanish bibliography are analyzed in this paper. The reader will also find unexpected connections of the periodic table with the Bible or the architect Buckminster Fuller.
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  2. Paul A. Bogaard (2006). After Substance: How Aristotle's Question Still Bears on the Philosophy of Chemistry. Philosophy of Science 73 (5):853-863.
    This article will explore whether there are arguments for Aristotle's concept mixis which can aid our current discussions within the philosophy of chemistry. We remain troubled by the way and extent to which chemical substance in bulk can be identified with or reduced to the stability and structure of molecules, and whether these in turn can be identified with or reduced to elemental atoms and the quantum theoretical characterization of their electrons. Aristotle was as determined as we are to think (...)
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  3. Alan Chalmers (2004). Giving `Substance' to Chemistry. Metascience 13 (1):109-111.
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  4. Alan F. Chalmers (2008). Atom and Aether in Nineteenth-Century Physical Science. Foundations of Chemistry 10 (3):157-166.
    This paper suggests that the cases made for atoms and the aether in nineteenth-century physical science were analogous, with the implication that the case for the atom was less than compelling, since there is no aether. It is argued that atoms did not play a productive role in nineteenth-century chemistry any more than the aether did in physics. Atoms and molecules did eventually find an indispensable home in chemistry but by the time that they did so they were different kinds (...)
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  5. Robert J. Deltete & Anastasios Brenner (2004). Pierre Duhem: Mixture and Chemical Combination and Related Essays. Edited and Translated, with an Introduction, by Paul Needham. Foundations of Chemistry 6 (3):203-232.
    The following is an essay review of Paul Needham's translation of Pierre Duhem's Lemixte et la combinaison chimique and a numberof other essays. In this review we describe theintent and general features of Le mixte and try to place it in the larger context of Duhem'sprogram for energetics. The long essay (Essay3) opposing Marcellin Berthelot'sthermochemistry is singled out for detailedcommentary, since it gives Duhem's reasons forendorsing Josiah Willard Gibbs's chemicalstatics. We argue that a chemical mechanics ofa Gibbsian sort, defended in (...)
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  6. Joseph E. Earley (2009). How Chemistry Shifts Horizons: Element, Substance, and the Essential. Foundations of Chemistry 11 (2):65-77.
    In 1931 eminent chemist Fritz Paneth maintained that the modern notion of “element” is closely related to (and as “metaphysical” as) the concept of element used by the ancients (e.g., Aristotle). On that basis, the element chlorine (properly so-called) is not the elementary substance dichlorine, but rather chlorine as it is in carbon tetrachloride. The fact that pure chemicals are called “substances” in English (and closely related words are so used in other European languages) derives from philosophical compromises made by (...)
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  7. Joseph E. Earley (2005). Why There is No Salt in the Sea. Foundations of Chemistry 7 (1):85-102.
    What, precisely, is `salt'? It is a certainwhite, solid, crystalline, material, alsocalled sodium chloride. Does any of that solidwhite stuff exist in the sea? – Clearly not.One can make salt from sea water easily enough,but that fact does not establish thatsalt, as such, is present in brine. (Paper andink can be made into a novel – but no novelactually exists in a stack of blank paper witha vial of ink close by.) When salt dissolves inwater, what is present is no (...)
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  8. M. D. Eddy (2004). Elements, Principles and the Narrative of Affinity. Foundations of Chemistry 6 (2):161-175.
    In the 18th century, the concept of ‘affinity’, ‘principle’ and ‘element’ dominated chemical discourse, both inside and outside the laboratory. Although much work has been done on these terms and the methodological commitments which guided their usage, most studies over the past two centuries have concentrated on their application as relevant to Lavoisier's oxygen theory and the new nomenclature. Kim's affinity challenges this historiographical trajectory by looking at several French chemists in the light of their private thoughts, public disputations and (...)
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  9. Carmen J. Giunta (2001). Argon and the Periodic System: The Piece That Would Not Fit. [REVIEW] Foundations of Chemistry 3 (2):105-128.
    The discovery of the noble gases and their incorporation into the periodic system are examined in this paper. A chronology of experimental reports on argon and helium and the properties relevant to their nature and position in the periodic system is presented. Proposals on the nature of argon and helium that appeared in the aftermath of their discovery are examined in light of the various empirical and theoretical considerations that supported and contradicted them. ``The piece that would not fit'' refers (...)
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  10. Fathi Habashi (2010). Metals: Typical and Less Typical, Transition and Inner Transition. [REVIEW] Foundations of Chemistry 12 (1):31-39.
    While most chemists agree on what is a metal and what is a non-metal there is a disagreement with respect to what is a metalloid and what is a transition metal. It is believed that this problem can be solved if two new terms are adopted: typical and less typical metals. These new terms will also help reconcile the European Periodic Table versus the North American regarding numbering of groups as well as the IUPAC numbering which could be as well (...)
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  11. Rom Harré (2008). Some Presuppositions in the Metaphysics of Chemical Reactions. Foundations of Chemistry 10 (1):19-38.
    The project of chemistry to classify substances and develop techniques for their transformation into other substances rests on assumptions about the means by which compounds are constituted and reconstituted. Robert Boyle not only proposed empirical tests for a metaphysics of material corpuscules, but also a principle for designing experimental procedures in line with that metaphysics. Later chemists added activity concepts to the repertoire. The logic of activity explanations in modern times involves hierarchies of activity concepts, transitions between levels through non-dispositional (...)
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  12. Rom Harré (2005). Chemical Kinds and Essences Revisited. Foundations of Chemistry 7 (1):7-30.
    The philosophical problem of the utility andmeaning of essences for chemistry cannot beresolved by Wittgenstein's principle thatessence cannot explain use, because use isdisplayed in a field of family resemblances.The transition of chemical taxonomy fromvernacular and mystical based terms to theorybased terms stabilized as a unified descriptivetaxonomy, removes chemical discourse from itsconnection with the vernacular. The transitioncan be tracked using the Lockean concepts ofreal and nominal essences, and the changingpriorities between them. Analyzing propertiesdispositionally, initiating a search forgroundings strengthens the case for (...)
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  13. Robin Hendry (2010). The Elements and Conceptual Change. In Helen Beebee & Nigel Sabbarton-Leary (eds.), The Semantics and Metaphysics of Natural Kinds. Routledge.
  14. Robin Findlay Hendry (2006). Elements, Compounds, and Other Chemical Kinds. Philosophy of Science 73 (5):864-875.
    In this article I assess the problems and prospects of a microstructural approach to chemical substances. Saul Kripke and Hilary Putnam famously claimed that to be gold is to have atomic number 79 and to be water is to be H2O. I relate the first claim to the concept of element in the history of chemistry, arguing that the reference of element names is determined by atomic number. Compounds are more difficult: water is so complex and heterogeneous at the molecular (...)
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  15. Robin Findlay Hendry (2005). Lavoisier and Mendeleev on the Elements. Foundations of Chemistry 7 (1):31-48.
    Lavoisier defined an element as a chemicalsubstance that cannot be decomposed usingcurrent analytical methods. Mendeleev saw anelement as a substance composed of atoms of thesame atomic weight. These `definitions' doquite different things: Lavoisier'sdistinguishes the elements from the compounds,so that the elements may form the basis of acompositional nomenclature; Mendeleev's offersa criterion of sameness and difference forelemental substances, while Lavoisier's doesnot. In this paper I explore the historical andtheoretical background to each proposal.Lavoisier's and Mendeleev's explicitconceptions of elementhood differed from eachother, and (...)
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  16. Sr Joseph E. Earley (2006). Chemical "Substances" That Are Not "Chemical Substances". Philosophy of Science 73 (5):841-852.
    The main scientific problems of chemical bonding were solved half a century ago, but adequate philosophical understanding of chemical combination is yet to be achieved. Chemists routinely use important terms ("element," "atom," "molecule," "substance") with more than one meaning. This can lead to misunderstandings. Eliminativists claim that what seems to be a baseball breaking a window is merely the action of "atoms, acting in concert." They argue that statues, baseballs, and similar macroscopic things "do not exist." When macroscopic objects like (...)
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  17. R. Garth Kidd (2011). Elements of the Third Kind and the Spin-Dependent Chemical Force. Foundations of Chemistry 13 (2):109-119.
  18. H. Kragh (2000). Conceptual Changes in Chemistry: The Notion of a Chemical Element, Ca. 1900-1925. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 31 (4):435-450.
  19. S. Le Vent (2001). What is a Perfect Gas Mixture? Foundations of Chemistry 3 (3):227-239.
    The definition of a perfect gas mixture varies substantially within the chemistry textbook literature. A recent International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) definition is here criticised as being insufficient to cover properties traditionally associated with such mixtures. Possible supplements to the definition to rectify the deficiency are considered. An alternative definition in molecular terms is shown to be comprehensive. The paper should serve as a summary of the properties of a perfect gas mixture and of essential components of (...)
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  20. Paul Needham (2005). Mixtures and Modality. Foundations of Chemistry 7 (1):103-118.
    Some points are made aboutsubstance properties in their role ofintroducing mass terms. In particular, twoconditions of distributivity and cumulativityof mass predicates expressing these propertiesare not the independent pair they first appearto be. A classification of macroscopicsubstance concepts is developed. This needs tobe complemented in some way by the introductionof a modal qualification reminiscent ofAristotle's distinction between actual andpotential presence of substances in a mixture. Consideration of the latter feature hasprompted Joe Earley to raise the question ofwhether there is any salt (...)
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  21. Paul Needham (2004). Mixture and Chemical Combination and Related Essays: A Response to Robert Deltete and Anastasios Brenner. [REVIEW] Foundations of Chemistry 6 (3):233-245.
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  22. F. A. Paneth (2003). The Epistemological Status of the Chemical Concept of Element. Foundations of Chemistry 5 (2):113-145.
    This article is a translation into english of a lecture given by paneth in 1931. The content of the work is described by the section titles: (1) the need for epistemological clarification of the fundamental concepts of chemistry, (2) the concept of substance in chemistry, (3) the epistemological standpoint of the ancient atomists, (4) the epistemological position of the concept of element introduced by lavoisier, (5) the double meaning of the chemical concept of element: 'basic substance' and 'simple substance', And (...)
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  23. F. A. Paneth (1962). The Epistemological Status of the Chemical Concept of Element (I). British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 13 (49):1-14.
    This article is a translation into english of a lecture given by paneth in 1931. The content of the work is described by the section titles: (1) the need for epistemological clarification of the fundamental concepts of chemistry, (2) the concept of substance in chemistry, (3) the epistemological standpoint of the ancient atomists, (4) the epistemological position of the concept of element introduced by lavoisier, (5) the double meaning of the chemical concept of element: 'basic substance' and 'simple substance', And (...)
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  24. F. A. Paneth (1962). The Epistemological Status of the Chemical Concept of Element (II). British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 13 (50):144-160.
    This article is a translation into english of a lecture given by paneth in 1931. The content of the work is described by the section titles: (1) the need for epistemological clarification of the fundamental concepts of chemistry, (2) the concept of substance in chemistry, (3) the epistemological standpoint of the ancient atomists, (4) the epistemological position of the concept of element introduced by lavoisier, (5) the double meaning of the chemical concept of element: 'basic substance' and 'simple substance', And (...)
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  25. Gary Patterson (2010). Les Atomes: A Landmark Book in Chemistry. [REVIEW] Foundations of Chemistry 12 (3):223-233.
    There have been occasions when the publication of a particular book has had a singular impact on the conceptual world of the chemist. Sometimes the publication occurs near the beginning of a major change in discourse, and sometimes more near the end. Jean Perrin published Les Atomes in 1913 as the culmination of a century-long controversy over the size and physical reality of atoms and molecules. After its publication almost all chemists and physicists agreed that atoms and molecules of the (...)
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  26. Jeffry L. Ramsey (2000). Joachim Schummer, Realismus Und Chemie: Philosophische Untersuchungen der Wissenschaft Von den Stoffen. [REVIEW] Foundations of Chemistry 2 (1):79-84.
  27. Geoff Rayner-Canham & Zheng Zheng (2008). Naming Elements After Scientists: An Account of a Controversy. [REVIEW] Foundations of Chemistry 10 (1):13-18.
    Over the last two hundred years, there have been many occasions where the name of a newly-discovered element has provoked controversy and dissent but in modern times, the naming of elements after scientists has proved to be particularly contentious. Here we recount the threads of this story, predominantly through discourses in the popular scientific journals, the first major discussion on naming an element after a scientist (Moseley); the first definitive naming after a scientist (Curie); and the first naming after (...)
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  28. Daniel Rothbart (2002). The Dual Nature of Chemical Substance. Techne 6 (2):106-109.
  29. Daniel Rothbart (1999). On the Relationship Between Instrument and Specimen in Chemical Research. Foundations of Chemistry 1 (3):255-268.
    Based on the design of many modern chemical instruments, information about a specimen is retrieved after the specimen undergoes agitation, manipulation and disturbance of its internal state. But can we retain the traditional ideal that instruments should reveal properties that are definable independently of all modes of detection? In this paper I argue that the capacity of chemical instruments to convert experimental phenomena to information places constraints on the way in which the specimen is characterized. During research, the specimen is (...)
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  30. Klaus Ruthenberg (2009). Paneth, Kant, and the Philosophy of Chemistry. Foundations of Chemistry 11 (2):79-91.
    Immanuel Kant has built up a dualistic epistemology that seems to fit to the peculiarities of chemistry quite well. Friedrich Paneth used Kant’s concept and characterised simple and basic substances which refer to the empirical and to the transcendental world, respectively. This paper takes account of the Kantian influences in Paneth’s philosophy of chemistry, and discusses pertinent topics, like observables, atomism and realism.
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  31. Eric Scerri (2005). Some Aspects of the Metaphysics of Chemistry and the Nature of the Elements. Hyle 11 (2):127 - 145.
    There is now a considerable body of published work on the epistemology of modern chemistry, especially with regard to the nature of quantum chemistry. In addition, the question of the metaphysical underpinnings of chemistry has received a good deal of attention. The present article concentrates on metaphysical considerations including the question of whether elements and groups of elements are natural kinds. It is also argued that an appeal to the metaphysical nature of elements can help clarify the re-emerging controversies among (...)
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  32. Joachim Schummer (2004). Editorial: Substances Versus Reactions. Hyle 10 (1):3 - 4.
    Is chemistry primarily about things or about processes, about chemical substances or about chemical reactions? Is a chemical reaction defined by the change of certain substances, or are substances defined by their characteristic chemical reactions? What appears to be a play on words to the modern scientist, is actually one of the most fundamental ontological question since antiquity, prompted by the most radical change – the chemical change or the ‘coming-to-be and passing-away’ as Aristotle’s treatise on theoretical chemistry came to (...)
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  33. M. F. Sharlow (2006). Chemical Elements and the Problem of Universals. Foundations of Chemistry 8 (3):225-242.
    In this paper, I explore a seldom-recognized connection between the ontology of abstract objects and a current issue in the philosophy of chemistry. Specifically, I argue that realism with regard to universals implies a view of chemical elements similar to F.A. Paneth’s thesis about the dual nature of the concept of element.
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  34. Tuomas E. Tahko (forthcoming). Natural Kind Essentialism Revisited. Mind.
    Recent work on Natural Kind Essentialism has taken a deflationary turn. The assumptions about the grounds of essentialist truths concerning natural kinds familiar from the Kripke-Putnam framework are now considered questionable. The source of the problem, however, has not been sufficiently explicated. The paper focuses on the Twin Earth scenario and it will be demonstrated that the essentialist principle at its core (which I call IDENT) – necessarily, a sample of a chemical substance, A, is of the same kind as (...)
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