The Tausk controversy on the foundations of quantum mechanics: Physics, philosophy, and politics


In 1966 the Brazilian physicist Klaus Tausk (b. 1927) circulated a preprint from the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste, Italy, criticizing Adriana Daneri, Angelo Loinger, and Giovanni Maria Prosperi`s theory of 1962 on the measurement problem in quantum mechanics. A heated controversy ensued between two opposing camps within the orthodox interpretation of quantum theory, represented by Leon Rosenfeld and Eugene P. Wigner. The controversy went well beyond the strictly scientific issues, however, reflecting philosophical and political commitments within the context of the Cold War, the relationship between science in developed and Third World countries, the importance of social skills, and personal idiosyncrasies



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