David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 44 (1):40-47 (2013)
The very formal structure of quantum mechanics implies the loss of individuality of physical systems and it requires to look at the Universe as an unbroken whole. The main reason for which, within such a theory, one must renounce to a clear identification of the parts and the whole is the superposition principle which stays at the basis of the theory. It implies, as well known, the phenomenon of entanglement which, in the most extreme case, entails that the constituents of a composite system do not possess any objective property; only the system as a whole, when it is isolated, has some properties. Another source of difficulties derives from the symmetry requests that the theory imposes in the case of systems containing identical constituents. We discuss these points in detail and we outline recent proposals yielding a consistent solution to the problems arising from the entanglement between a microsystem and a macrosystem which unavoidably occurs in a measurement process. In particular we take into account the so called “collapse” theories which embody a mechanism forbidding, at an appropriate level, the persistence of superpositions and, as a consequence, lead, in general, to the emergence of precise individual properties for macroscopic systems. We then pass to a critical analysis of the difficulties related to the identity of the constituents. We stress that various misunderstandings characterize the treatment of this problem and we make fully clear how one has to deal with the very concept of entangled systems when identical constituents are involved. The ensuing picture should make clear to which extent one can still consistently ground the distinction between the parts and the whole in a genuinely quantum context
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Angelo Bassi & GianCarlo Ghirardi (2001). Counting Marbles: Reply to Clifton and Monton. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 52 (1):125-130.
Angelo Bassi & GianCarlo Ghirardi (1999). More About Dynamical Reduction and the Enumeration Principle. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 50 (4):719 - 734.
Rob Clifton & Bradley Monton (1999). Losing Your Marbles in Wavefunction Collapse Theories. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 50 (4):697 - 717.
Albert Einstein, Boris Podolsky & Nathan Rosen (1935). Can Quantum-Mechanical Description of Physical Reality Be Considered Complete? Physical Review (47):777-780.
G. C. Ghirardi, R. Grassi & F. Benatti (1995). Describing the Macroscopic World: Closing the Circle Within the Dynamical Reduction Program. [REVIEW] Foundations of Physics 25 (1):5-38.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Theodore Sider (2014). Consequences of Collapse. In Donald Baxter & Aaron Cotnoir (eds.), Composition as Identity. Oxford University Press. 211-221.
Peter J. Lewis (2003). Four Strategies for Dealing with the Counting Anomaly in Spontaneous Collapse Theories of Quantum Mechanics. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 17 (2):137 – 142.
William F. Vallicella (2006). Can the Chariot Take Us to the Land of No Self? The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 9:29-33.
Peter J. Lewis (2003). Quantum Mechanics and Ordinary Language: The Fuzzy Link. Philosophy of Science 70 (5):1437-1446.
Meinard Kuhlmann (2011). Mechanisms in Dynamically Complex Systems. In Phyllis McKay Illari & Jon Williamson (eds.), Causality in the Sciences. Oxford University Press.
Adam Sennet (2011). Unarticulated Constituents and Propositional Structure. Mind and Language 26 (4):412-435.
Anna Jedynak (2000). Struktura teorii naukowych i systemów wartości. Filozofia Nauki 3.
C. W. (2002). On Peaceful Coexistence: Is the Collapse Postulate Incompatible with Relativity? Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 33 (3):435-466.
Peter J. Lewis (2005). Interpreting Spontaneous Collapse Theories. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 36 (1):165-180.
Ross P. Cameron (forthcoming). Parts Generate the Whole, but They Are Not Identical to It. In Donald Baxter & Aaron Cotnoir (eds.), Composition as Identity. Oxford University Press.
P. D. Magnus (2003). Underdetermination and the Problem of Identical Rivals. Philosophy of Science 70 (5):1256-1264.
Wayne C. Myrvold (2002). On Peaceful Coexistence: Is the Collapse Postulate Incompatible with Relativity? Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 33 (3):435-466.
Greg Frost-Arnold & P. D. Magnus (2010). The Identical Rivals Response to Underdetermination. In P. D. Magnus Jacob Busch (ed.), New Waves in Philosophy of Science. Palgrave Macmillan.
Added to index2012-01-15
Total downloads11 ( #154,407 of 1,409,982 )
Recent downloads (6 months)2 ( #107,552 of 1,409,982 )
How can I increase my downloads?