Chapter

Symmetry Arguments in Science and Metaphysics

Bas C. van Fraassen

in Laws and Symmetry

Published in print November 1989 | ISBN: 9780198248606
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597459 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198248601.003.0010

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

 Symmetry Arguments in Science and Metaphysics

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Starting with the paradigm example of mirror image symmetry, this chapter provides a sustained analysis of the different forms of arguments that draw on, or exploit symmetries in, nature and in theoretical models. Specific applications are made to the postulation of hidden variables, the role of invariance in the scientific representation of nature, and the problem of adequately characterizing the notion of determinism.

Keywords: determinism; hidden variables; invariance; mirror image; symmetry; symmetry argument

Chapter.  10784 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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