Realism in Mathematics

Realism in Mathematics

by Penelope Maddy
     
 
When engaged in mathematics, most people tend to think of themselves as scientists investigating the features of real mathematical things, and the wildly successful application of mathematics in the physical sciences reinforces this picture of mathematics as an objective study. For philosophers, however, this realism about mathematics raises serious questions: What

Overview

When engaged in mathematics, most people tend to think of themselves as scientists investigating the features of real mathematical things, and the wildly successful application of mathematics in the physical sciences reinforces this picture of mathematics as an objective study. For philosophers, however, this realism about mathematics raises serious questions: What are mathematical things? Where are they? How do we know about them? Penelope Maddy delineates and defends a novel version of mathematical realism that answers the traditional questions and refocuses philosophical attention on the pressing foundational issues of contemporary mathematics.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Highly recommended....The book is a pleasure to read. Both mathematicians with interest in philosophy and philosophers of mathematics and science will enjoy and profit from it."—Modern Logic

"Written in a lively, engaging style. We hope it serves to stimulate others to think seriously about issues in the philosophy of mathematics because, as Maddy claims, these issues bear directly on mainstream philosophy."—Philosophy of Science

"The book is written in a lively, engaging style. We hope that it serves to stimulate others to think seriously about issues in philosophy of mathematics because, as Maddy claims, these issues bear directly on mainstream philosophy."—Philosophy of Science

"She has...clearly marked out an original and interesting position."—Times Higher Education Supplement

"Maddy has written a concise and lucid book which covers not only her own ideas on set-theoretic realism and the "reality" of mathematics, but also provides a useful summary of the old and continuing debates surrounding mathematical ontology. This feature makes the book ideal as a classroom text."—Review of Metaphysics

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780191519765
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
08/16/1990
Series:
Clarendon Paperbacks
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
535 KB

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

University of California, Irvine

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