David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Erkenntnis 69 (3):279 - 293 (2008)
The first part of this paper discusses Quine’s views on underdetermination of theory by evidence, and the indeterminacy of translation, or meaning, in relation to certain physical theories. The underdetermination thesis says different theories can be supported by the same evidence, and the indeterminacy thesis says the same component of a theory that is underdetermined by evidence is also meaning indeterminate. A few examples of underdetermination and meaning indeterminacy are given in the text. In the second part of the paper, Quine’s scientific realism is discussed briefly, along with some of the difficulties encountered when considering the ‘truth’ of different empirically equivalent theories. It is concluded that the difference between underdetermination and indeterminacy, while significant, is not as great as Quine claims. It just means that after we have chosen a framework theory, from a number of empirically equivalent ones, we still have further choices along two different dimensions.
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References found in this work BETA
John G. Cramer (1986). The Transactional Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics. Reviews of Modern Physics 58 (3):647-687.
Ian Hacking (1983). Representing and Intervening: Introductory Topics in the Philosophy of Natural Science. Cambridge University Press.
Volker Halbach (1999). Disquotationalism and Infinite Conjunctions. Mind 108 (429):1-22.
Christian List (1999). Craig's Theorem and the Empirical Underdetermination Thesis Reassessed. Disputatio:1-12.
Holger Lyre (2001). The Principles of Gauging. Philosophy of Science 68 (3):S371-S381.
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