A theory of causality: Causality=interaction (as defined by a suitable quantum field theory) [Book Review]

Erkenntnis 31 (1):77 - 108 (1989)

Abstract
In this paper I put forward a suggestion for identifying causality in micro-systems with the specific quantum field theoretic interactions that occur in such systems. I first argue — along the lines of general transference theories — that such a physicalistic account is essential to an understanding of causation; I then proceed to sketch the concept of interaction as it occurs in quantum field theory and I do so from both a formal and an informal point of view. Finally, I present reasons for thinking that only a quantum field theoretic account can do the job — in particular I rely on a theorem by D. Currie and to the effect that interaction cannot be described in (a Hamiltonian formulation of) Classical Mechanics. Throughout the paper I attempt to suggest that the widespread scepticism about the ability of quantum theory to support a theory of causality is mistaken and rests on several misunderstandings.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/BF01239130
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 42,142
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Causation and the Flow of Energy.David Fair - 1979 - Erkenntnis 14 (3):219 - 250.
On the Grammar of 'Cause'.Jerrold L. Aronson - 1971 - Synthese 22 (3-4):414 - 430.

View all 12 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Fate of 'Particles' in Quantum Field Theories with Interactions.Doreen Fraser - 2008 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 39 (4):841-859.
Truthmakers for Negative Truths.George Molnar - 2000 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 78 (1):72 – 86.
Weyling the Time Away: The Non-Unitary Implementability of Quantum Field Dynamics on Curved Spacetime.Aristidis Arageorgis, John Earman & Laura Ruetsche - 2002 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 33 (2):151-184.

View all 12 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Nonlocal Character of Quantum Theory.Henry P. Stapp - 1997 - American Journal of Physics 65:300.
The Fate of 'Particles' in Quantum Field Theories with Interactions.Doreen Fraser - 2008 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 39 (4):841-859.
The History and Philosophy of Quantum Field Theory.Don Robinson - 1994 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1994:61 - 68.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
66 ( #119,690 of 2,253,607 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
6 ( #312,446 of 2,253,607 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature