Chapter

Real Essences and Human Experience

N. David Mermin

in The One Culture?

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print June 2001 | ISBN: 9780226467221
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226467245 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226467245.003.0020
Real Essences and Human Experience

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No reliable body of knowledge can be undermined by viewing its acquisition as a collective human activity. Indeed the chapter goeso beyond Harry Collins and maintains that scientists can benefit from “estranging themselves from their own practices” in this way. What else was Einstein's recognition of the conventional character of simultaneity? Or Steven Weinberg's warning against “ill-placed loyalty” to “the great heroic ideas of the past”? Many of the interpretive confusions plaguing the foundations of quantum mechanics might reflect insufficient estrangement from unsound linguistic practices.

Keywords: human experience; body of knowledge; human activity; Harry Collins; quantum mechanics; linguistic practices

Chapter.  2206 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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