David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophia Mathematica 3 (2):129-156 (1995)
Discussions of the applicability of mathematics in the natural sciences have been flawed by failure to realize that there are multiple senses in which mathematics can be ‘applied’ and, correspondingly, multiple problems that stem from the applicability of mathematics. I discuss semantic, metaphysical, descriptive, and and epistemological problems of mathematical applicability, dwelling on Frege's contribution to the solution of the first two types. As for the remaining problems, I discuss the contributions of Hartry Field and Eugene Wigner. Finally, I argue that there are epistemological problems concerning the applicability of mathematics that nobody in the philosophical community has yet confronted, though the problems are well known to physicists.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Configure|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Anthony Peressini (2008). Confirmational Holism and its Mathematical (W)Holes. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 39 (1):102-111.
Similar books and articles
Torsten Wilholt (2006). Lost on the Way From Frege to Carnap: How the Philosophy of Science Forgot the Applicability Problem. Grazer Philosophische Studien 73 (1):69-82.
Penelope J. Maddy (2001). Some Naturalistic Reflections on Set Theoretic Method. Topoi 20 (1):17-27.
Mark Steiner (1998). The Applicability of Mathematics as a Philosophical Problem. Harvard University Press.
Alan Baker (2003). The Indispensability Argument and Multiple Foundations for Mathematics. Philosophical Quarterly 53 (210):49–67.
Feng Ye (2010). The Applicability of Mathematics as a Scientific and a Logical Problem. Philosophia Mathematica 18 (2):144-165.
Christopher Pincock (2009). Towards a Philosophy of Applied Mathematics. In Otávio Bueno & Øystein Linnebo (eds.), New Waves in Philosophy of Mathematics. Palgrave Macmillan.
L. Luce (1991). Literalism and the Applicability of Arithmetic. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 42 (4):469-489.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads50 ( #27,202 of 1,089,154 )
Recent downloads (6 months)4 ( #24,252 of 1,089,154 )
How can I increase my downloads?