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Fernando Birman
Delft University of Technology
  1. Quantum Mechanics and the Plight of Physicalism.Fernando Birman - 2009 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 40 (2):207-225.
    The literature on physicalism often fails to elucidate, I think, what the word physical in physical ism precisely means. Philosophers speak at times of an ideal set of fundamental physical facts, or they stipulate that physical means non-mental , such that all fundamental physical facts are fundamental facts pertaining to the non-mental. In this article, I will probe physicalism in the very much tangible framework of quantum mechanics. Although this theory, unlike “ideal physics” or some “final theory of non-mentality”, is (...)
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    Quantum Mechanics, Correlations, and Relational Probability.Fernando Birman - 2009 - Critica 41 (121):3-22.
    This article sets forth and discusses the Ithaca Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics (IIQM). Section 1 presents the standard formalism of quantum mechanics and the measurement problem. Section 2 sketches Everett’s interpretation as a preamble to IIQM. Section 3 sets out IIQM’s central claim: it is possible to make sense of quantum mechanics by taking as the proper (and only) subject of physics the correlations among subsystems. Section 4 introduces a theorem of quantum mechanics, the SSC theorem, which supports this claim. (...)
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  3. Quantum Mechanics, Correlations, and Relational Probability.Fernando Birman - 2009 - Critica 41 (121):3-22.
    This article sets forth and discusses the Ithaca Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics. Section 1 presents the standard formalism of quantum mechanics and the measurement problem. Section 2 sketches Everett's interpretation as a preamble to IIQM. Section 3 sets out IIQM's central claim: it is possible to make sense of quantum mechanics by taking as the proper subject of physics the correlations among subsystems. Section 4 introduces a theorem of quantum mechanics, the SSC theorem, which supports this claim. Section 5 contends (...)
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    On the Rationality of Decisions with Unreliable Probabilities.Fernando Birman - 2009 - Disputatio 3 (26):97-116.
    The standard Bayesian recipe for selecting the rational choice is presented. A familiar example in which the recipe fails to produce any definite result is introduced. It is argued that a generalization of Gärdenfors’ and Sahlin’s theory of unreliable probabilities — which itself does not guarantee a solution to the problem — offers the best available approach. But a number of challenges to this approach are also presented and discussed.
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    Pragmatic Concerns and Images of the World.Fernando Birman - 2010 - Philosophia 38 (4):715-731.
    I defend a pragmatist reinterpretation of Sellars’s famous manifest-scientific distinction. I claim that in order to do justice to this important distinction we must first recognize, despite what philosophers—including, arguably, Sellars—often make of it, that the distinction does not draw an epistemological or metaphysical boundary between different kinds of objects and events, but a pragmatic boundary between different ways in which we interact with objects and events. Put differently, I argue that the manifest-scientific distinction, in my view, can be best (...)
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    Horwich On The Leibnizian Ratio Against Absolute Space And Motion.Fernando Birman - 2011 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 7 (1):11-24.