Algebraic substantivalism and the hole argument


Authors
Jonathan Bain
New York University
Abstract
Algebraic substantivalism, as an interpretation of general relativity formulated in the Einstein algebra formalism, avoids the hole argument against manifold substantivalism. In this essay, I argue that this claim is well-founded. I first identify the hole argument as an argument against a specific form of semantic realism with respect to spacetime. I then consider algebraic substantivalism as an alternative form of semantic realism. In between, I justify this alternative form by reviewing the Einstein algebra formalism and indicating the extent to which it is expressively equivalent to the standard formalism of tensor analysis on differential manifolds.
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