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 35 (4):643-670 (2004)
After decades of neglect philosophers of physics have discovered gauge theories--arguably the paradigm of modern field physics--as a genuine topic for foundational and philosophical research. Incidentally, in the last couple of years interest from the philosophy of physics in structural realism--in the eyes of its proponents the best suited realist position towards modern physics--has also raised. This paper tries to connect both topics and aims to show that structural realism gains further credence from an ontological analysis of gauge theories--in particular U(1) gauge theory. In the first part of the paper the framework of fiber bundle gauge theories is briefly presented and the interpretation of local gauge symmetry will be examined. In the second part, an ontological underdetermination of gauge theories is carved out by considering the various kinds of non-locality involved in such typical effects as the Aharonov-Bohm effect. The analysis shows that the peculiar form of non-separability figuring in gauge theories is a variant of spatiotemporal holism and can be distinguished from quantum theoretic holism. In the last part of the paper the arguments for a gauge theoretic support of structural realism are laid out and discussed.
|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
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Roman Frigg & Ioannis Votsis (2011). Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Structural Realism but Were Afraid to Ask. European Journal for Philosophy of Science 1 (2):227-276.
James Ladyman (2007). Scientific Structuralism: On the Identity and Diversity of Objects in a Structure. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 81 (1):23–43.
Peter Mark Ainsworth (2010). What is Ontic Structural Realism? Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 41 (1):50-57.
Matteo Morganti (2011). Is There a Compelling Argument for Ontic Structural Realism? Philosophy of Science 78 (5):1165-1176.
Aharon Kantorovich (2009). Ontic Structuralism and the Symmetries of Particle Physics. Journal for General Philosophy of Science 40 (1):73 - 84.
Similar books and articles
Paul Teller (2000). The Gauge Argument. Philosophy of Science 67 (3):481.
Steven Weinstein (1999). Gravity and Gauge Theory. Philosophy of Science 66 (3):155.
Richard Healey (2007). Gauging What's Real. Oxford University Press.
Alexandre Guay (2008). A Partial Elucidation of the Gauge Principle. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 39 (2):346-363.
Holger Lyre (2001). The Principles of Gauging. Philosophy of Science 68 (3):S371-S381.
Holger Lyre (2009). Structural Realism and Abductive-Transcendental Arguments. In P. Kerszberg, J. Petitot & M. Bitbol (eds.), Constituting Objectivity. Transcendental Perspectives on Modern Physics.
Richard Healey (2009). Gauging What's Real: The Conceptual Foundations of Contemporary Gauge Theories. OUP Oxford.
John Earman (2002). Gauge Matters. Proceedings of the Philosophy of Science Association 2002 (3):S209--20.
Richard Healey (2004). Gauge Theories and Holisms. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 35 (4):619-642.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads50 ( #31,753 of 1,098,978 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #114,620 of 1,098,978 )
How can I increase my downloads?