Graduate studies at Western
Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 37 (1):174-191 (2006)
|Abstract||In his general theory of relativity (GR) Einstein sought to generalize the special-relativistic equivalence of inertial frames to a principle according to which all frames of reference are equivalent. He claimed to have achieved this aim through the general covariance of the equations of GR. There is broad consensus among philosophers of relativity that Einstein was mistaken in this. That equations can be made to look the same in different frames certainly does not imply in general that such frames are physically equivalent. We shall argue, however, that Einstein's position is tenable. The equivalence of arbitrary frames in GR should not be equated with relativity of arbitrary motion, though. There certainly are observable differences between reference frames in GR (differences in the way particles move and fields evolve). The core of our defense of Einstein's position will be to argue that such differences should be seen as fact-like rather than law-like in GR. By contrast, in classical mechanics and in special relativity (SR) the differences between inertial systems and accelerated systems have a law-like status. The fact-like character of the differences between frames in GR justifies regarding them as equivalent in the same sense as inertial frames in SR.|
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Configure|
Similar books and articles
Toshio Ishigaki (1995). A Formal System for Classical Particle Mechanics, its Model-Theoretic Applications and Space-Time Structure. Synthese 102 (2):267 - 292.
Robert Goldblatt (2006). Maps and Monads for Modal Frames. Studia Logica 83 (1-3):309 - 331.
Peter Gabriel Bergmann (1942). Introduction to the Theory of Relativity. New York, Prentice-Hall, Inc..
Roger Jones (1980). Is General Relativity Generally Relativistic? PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1980:363 - 381.
Allen I. Janis (1969). Synchronism by Slow Transport of Clocks in Noninertial Frames of Reference. Philosophy of Science 36 (1):74-81.
M. Ghins, Budden &Unknown & T. (2001). The Principle of Equivalence. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 32 (1):33-51.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads61 ( #18,848 of 739,671 )
Recent downloads (6 months)38 ( #2,653 of 739,671 )
How can I increase my downloads?