The Structure of the World: Metaphysics and Representation by Steven FrenchThe Structure of the World: Metaphysics and Representation by Steven French

The Structure of the World: Metaphysics and Representation

bySteven French

Paperback | December 31, 2016

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In The Structure of the World, Steven French articulates and defends the bold claim that there are no objects. At the most fundamental level, modern physics presents us with a world of structures and making sense of that view is the central aim of the increasingly widespread position known asstructural realism. Drawing on contemporary work in metaphysics and philosophy of science, as well as the "forgotten" history of structural realism itself, French attempts to further ground and develop this position. He argues that structural realism offers the best way of balancing our need toaccommodate the results of modern science with our desire to arrive at an appropriately informed understanding of the world that science presents to us. Covering not only the realism-antirealism debate, the nature of representation, and the relationship between metaphysics and science, The Structure of the World defends a form of eliminativism about objects that sets laws and symmetry principles at the heart of ontology. In place of a world ofmicroscopic objects banging into one another and governed by the laws of physics, it offers a world of laws and symmetries, on which determinate physical properties are dependent. In presenting this account, French also tackles the distinction between mathematical and physical structures, the natureof laws, and causality in the context of modern physics, and he concludes by exploring the extent to which structural realism can be extended into chemistry and biology.
Steven French taught in Brazil and the USA before moving to Leeds in 1993. He is Professor of the Philosophy of Science and the author or editor of six books and over ninety papers. His principal areas of research are the metaphysical foundations of quantum physics, the nature of theories, and structural realism. He is a former Preside...
Title:The Structure of the World: Metaphysics and RepresentationFormat:PaperbackDimensions:416 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.03 inPublished:December 31, 2016Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198776667

ISBN - 13:9780198776666

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Table of Contents

1. Theory Change: From Fresnel's Equations to Group Theoretic Structure2. Mixing in the Metaphysics 1--Underdermination3. Mixing in the Metaphysics 2--Humility4. Scenes from the Lost History of Structuralism5. The Presentation of Objects and the Representation of Structure6. OSR and 'Group Structural Realism'7. The Elimination of Objects8. Mathematics, 'Physical' Structure and the Nature of Causation9. Modality, Structures, and Dispositions10. The Might of Modal Structuralism11. Structure, Modality, and Unitary Inequivalence12. Shifting to Structures in Biology and BeyondBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

"superb . . . this is an extremely rich and fascinating book, well worth reading." --Alyssa Ney, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews