Quantum Mechanics and the Philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead

Quantum Mechanics and the Philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead

by Michael Epperson
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0823250121

ISBN-13: 9780823250127

Pub. Date: 09/01/2012

Publisher: Fordham University Press

In Process and Reality and other works, Alfred North Whitehead struggled to come to terms with the impact the new science of quantum mechanics would have on metaphysics.

This ambitious book is the first extended analysis of the intricate relationships between relativity theory, quantum mechanics, and Whitehead's cosmology. Michael Epperson illuminates the

Overview

In Process and Reality and other works, Alfred North Whitehead struggled to come to terms with the impact the new science of quantum mechanics would have on metaphysics.

This ambitious book is the first extended analysis of the intricate relationships between relativity theory, quantum mechanics, and Whitehead's cosmology. Michael Epperson illuminates the intersection of science and philosophy in Whitehead's work-and details Whitehead's attempts to fashion an ontology coherent with quantum anomalies.

Including a nonspecialist introduction to quantum mechanics, Epperson adds an essential new dimension to our understanding of Whitehead-and of the constantly enriching encounter between science and philosophy in our century.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780823250127
Publisher:
Fordham University Press
Publication date:
09/01/2012
Series:
American Philosophy Series
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

Prefaceix
1.Introduction1
I.The Philosophical Implications of Quantum Mechanics
2.The Ontological Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics25
Bohr's Strategy: "Complementarity" as Evidence of an Unknowable Objective Reality31
Von Neumann's Alternative to Bohr's Epistemic Schism: Objective Reality via a Coherent Ontological Interpretation38
Closed Systems44
The Ontological Significance of Potentia47
3.The Evolution of Actuality to Probability61
The Formal Description of Quantum Mechanical State Evolution61
Decoherence77
Three Benefits of This Ontological Interpretation of the Quantum Formalism84
Summary97
Interlude: The Philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead105
II.Quantum Mechanics and Whitehead's Metaphysical Scheme
4.The Correlation of Quantum Mechanics and Whitehead's Philosophy119
The Phases of Quantum Mechanical Concrescence134
The Categoreal Obligations147
5.Spatiotemporal Extension164
Coordinate Division and Genetic Division166
Coordinate Division and the Decomposition of Invariant Spacetime Intervals170
Empirical Adequacy and the Constancy of the Velocity of Light176
Coordinate Extensive Relations and Genetic Historical Relations: The Dipolarity of Relativity Theory and Quantum Mechanics178
The Issue of Absolute Spacetime and Alternative Conceptions182
The Dipolar Cooperation of Coordinate and Genetic Division187
The Dipolarity of Publicity and Privacy195
The Abstractive Geometrical Scheme Underlying Extensive Connection202
Facts and Forms: Durations and Loci209
6.Summary and Outlook222
Works Cited245
Index249

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