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On What There Is according to Quantum mechanics

KANE, BRENDAN,KEVIN (2015) On What There Is according to Quantum mechanics. Masters thesis, Durham University.

PDF (Thesis) - Accepted Version


In this essay I make use of the resources of ‘naturalized ontology’ in order to determine what quantum mechanics implies about answers to fundamental metaphysical questions. Naturalized ontology is a methodology for metaphysics influenced by the philosopher Willard Van Orman Quine which makes explicit reference to our best scientific theories in order to answer questions which have traditionally been reckoned to belong solely to the realm of philosophy such as ‘What is the nature of reality in the most general sense?’ Quantum mechanics faces a unique interpretational problem known as the ‘measurement problem’
which makes determining the answer to such general metaphysical questions on this view especially problematic; nevertheless, naturalized ontology interprets and evaluates the various responses to this problem via measures of
‘theoretical virtue’, and ultimately concludes that the best interpretation of quantum mechanics—and thus reality—is absurd.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Arts
Keywords:Quantum mechanics; Philosophy; Science; Quine; Wave function
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Philosophy, Department of
Thesis Date:2015
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:07 Sep 2015 09:34

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