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  1. General Relativity Needs No Interpretation.Erik Curiel - 2009 - Philosophy of Science 76 (1):44-72.
    I argue that, contrary to the recent claims of physicists and philosophers of physics, general relativity requires no interpretation in any substantive sense of the term. I canvass the common reasons given in favor of the alleged need for an interpretation, including the difficulty in coming to grips with the physical significance of diffeomorphism invariance and of singular structure, and the problems faced in the search for a theory of quantum gravity. I find that none of them shows any defect (...)
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  • Substantivalism, Relationism, and Structural Spacetime Realism.Mauro Dorato - 2000 - Foundations of Physics 30 (10):1605-1628.
    Debates about the ontological implications of the general theory of relativity have long oscillated between spacetime substantivalism and relationism. I evaluate such debates by claiming that we need a third option, which I refer to as “structural spacetime realism.” Such a tertium quid sides with the relationists in defending the relational nature of the spacetime structure, but joins the substantivalists in arguing that spacetime exists, at least in part, independently of particular physical objects and events, the degree of “independence” being (...)
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  • On the Argument from Physics and General Relativity.Christopher Gregory Weaver - 2020 - Erkenntnis 85 (2):333-373.
    I argue that the best interpretation of the general theory of relativity has need of a causal entity, and causal structure that is not reducible to light cone structure. I suggest that this causal interpretation of GTR helps defeat a key premise in one of the most popular arguments for causal reductionism, viz., the argument from physics.
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  • What Einstein Would Have Said to Aristotle Regarding Dynamics and Cosmology.Favio Ernesto Cala Vitery - 2010 - Ideas Y Valores 59 (142):141-160.
    This paper proposes a parallel in the forms of Aristotle’s and Einstein’s physics. It’s an exercise on conceptual analysis rather than history. The possible similarity between Aristotle’s world and the form of Einstein’s universe is discussed. The correlation between kinematics, dynamics and gravity in their respective theories is also studied. Finally, Aristotle’s ontology of space is compared to the relativistic ontology spacetime.
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  • On the Existence of Spacetime Structure.Erik Curiel - 2014 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science:axw014.
    I examine the debate between substantivalists and relationalists about the ontological character of spacetime and conclude it is not well posed. I argue that the hole argument does not bear on the debate, because it provides no clear criterion to distinguish the positions. I propose two such precise criteria and construct separate arguments based on each to yield contrary conclusions, one supportive of something like relationalism and the other of something like substantivalism. The lesson is that one must fix an (...)
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  • The Relativity of Inertia and Reality of Nothing.Alexander Afriat & Ermenegildo Caccese - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 41 (1):9-26.
    The determination of inertia by matter is looked at in general relativity, where inertia can be represented by affine or projective structure. The matter tensor T seems to underdetermine affine structure by ten degrees of freedom, eight of which can be eliminated by gauge choices, leaving two. Their physical meaning---which is bound up with that of gravitational waves and the pseudotensor t, and with the conservation of energy-momentum---is considered, along with the dependence of reality on invariance and of causal explanation (...)
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  • Ephemeral Point-Events: Is There a Last Remnant of Physical Objectivity?Michele Vallisneri & Massimo Pauri - 2002 - Diálogos. Revista de Filosofía de la Universidad de Puerto Rico 37 (79):263-304.
    For the past two decades, Einstein's Hole Argument (which deals with the apparent indeterminateness of general relativity due to the general covariance of the field equations) and its resolution in terms of "Leibniz equivalence" (the statement that pseudo-Riemannian geometries related by active diffeomorphisms represent the same physical solution) have been the starting point for a lively philosophical debate on the objectivity of the point-events of space-time. It seems that Leibniz equivalence makes it impossible to consider the points of the space-time (...)
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  • Structural Realism and Quantum Gravity.Tian Yu Cao - 2006 - In Dean Rickles, Steven French & Juha Saatsi (eds.), The Structural Foundations of Quantum Gravity. Oxford University Press.
  • A New Spin on the Hole Argument.Dean Rickles - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 36 (3):415-434.
    This brief paper shows how an exact analogue of Einstein's original hole argument can be constructed in the loop representation of quantum gravity. The new argument is based on the embedding of spin-networks in a manifold and the action of the diffeomorphism constraint on them. The implications of this result are then discussed. I argue that the conclusions of many physicists working on loop quantum gravity---Rovelli and Smolin in particular---that the loop representation uniquely supports relationalism are unfounded.
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  • Rehabilitating Relationalism.Gordon Belot - 1999 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 13 (1):35 – 52.
    I argue that the conviction, widespread among philosophers, that substantivalism enjoys a clear superiority over relationalism in both Newtonian and relativistic physics is ill-founded. There are viable relationalist approaches to understanding these theories, and the substantival-relational debate should be of interest to philosophers and physicists alike, because of its connection with questions about the correct space of states for various physical theories.
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  • The Analysis of Singular Spacetimes.Erik Curiel - 1999 - Philosophy of Science 66 (3):145.
    Much controversy surrounds the question of what ought to be the proper definition of 'singularity' in general relativity, and the question of whether the prediction of such entities leads to a crisis for the theory. I argue that a definition in terms of curve incompleteness is adequate, and in particular that the idea that singularities correspond to 'missing points' has insurmountable problems. I conclude that singularities per se pose no serious problem for the theory, but their analysis does bring into (...)
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