Physics, Philosophy, and the Scientific Community: Essays in the philosophy and history of the natural sciences and mathematics In honor of Robert S. Cohen / Edition 1

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Overview

In three volumes, a distinguished group of scholars from a variety of disciplines in the natural and social sciences, the humanities and the arts contribute essays in honor of Robert S. Cohen, on the occasion of his 70th birthday. The range of the essays, as well as their originality, and their critical and historical depth, pay tribute to the extraordinary scope of Professor Cohen's intellectual interests, as a scientist-philosopher and a humanist, and also to his engagement in the world of social and political practice.
The essays presented in Physics, Philosophy, and the Scientific Community (Volume I of Essays in Honor of Robert S. Cohen) focus on philosophical and historical issues in contemporary physics: on the origins and conceptual foundations of quantum mechanics, on the reception and understanding of Bohr's and Einstein's work, on the emergence of quantum electrodynamics, and on some of the sharp philosophical and scientific issues that arise in current scientific practice (e.g. in superconductivity research). In addition, several essays deal with critical issues within the philosophy of science, both historical and contemporary: e.g. with Cartesian notions of mechanism in the philosophy of biology; with the language and logic of science - e.g. with new insights concerning the issue of a 'physicalistic' language in the arguments of Neurath, Carnap and Wittgenstein; with the notion of 'elementary logic'; and with rational and non-rational elements in the history of science. Two original contributions to the history of mathematics and some studies in the comparative sociology of science round off this outstanding collection.

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Table of Contents

A: Philosophical and Historical Issues in Contemporary Physics. Experiment vis-à-vis Theory in Superconductivity Research; J.L. Bromberg. Philosophy and the Birth of Quantum Theory; C. Chevalley. Identity Questions from Quantum Theory; M.L. Dalla Chiara, G. Toraldo di Francia. Some Reminiscences of Robert Cohen's Physics Department; D.S. Edmonds. Einstein in the Land of Nobel: an Episode in the Interplay of Science, Politics, Epistemology and Popular Culture; A. Elzinga. Did They just Misunderstood Each Other? Logical Empiricists and Bohr's Complementarity Argument; U. Röseberg. Physics, Community and the Crisis in Physical Theory; S.s. Schweber. B: Critical Questions in the Philosophy and History of the Natural Sciences. Contemporary Philosophy of Science as a Thinly Masked Antidemocratic Apologetics; J. Agassi. A Philosopher Looks at Science; Tian Yo Cao. Animal Mechanism and the Cartesian Vision of Nature; M. Grene. Michael Polanyi and the History of Science; G. Holton. Cosmological Outlooks and Technological Transfer: A Comparative View from Eastern Periphery; S. Nakyama. Some Questions concerning Limitations of the Range of Validity of Kuhn's Model of the History of Science; A. Polikarov. Historical Epistemology and Interdisciplinarity; J. Renn. American Creativity Research in a Bipolar World: A Look at One Chapter in World History and History of Science; M. Wallner. C: Logic, Language and Scientific Rationality. Rational and Nonrational Elements in the History of Science; K. Berka. Dirt and Crystal: Neurath on the Language of Science; R. Haller. What is Elementary Logic? Independence-Friendly Logic as the True Core Area of Logic; J. Hintikka.Physicalism in Wittgenstein and the Vienna Circle; T.E. Uebel. D: History of Mathematics. Conic Sections and Burning Mirrors: An Example of the Application of Ancient and Classical Mathematics; R. Rashed. Some Sociological Problems in the History of Mathematics; D.J. Struik. Index.

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