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Metaphysical Underdetermination: Why Worry?

PhilSci Pittsburgh

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Title Metaphysical Underdetermination: Why Worry?
Creator French, Steven
Subject Theory Change
Description Various forms of underdetermination that might threaten the realist stance are examined. That which holds between different ‘formulations’ of a theory (such as the Hamiltonian and Lagrangian formulations of classical mechanics) is considered in some detail, as is the ‘metaphysical’ underdetermination invoked to support ‘ontic structural realism’. The problematic roles of heuristic fruitfulness and surplus structure in attempts to break these forms of underdetermination are discussed and an approach emphasizing the relevant structural commonalities is defended.
Date 2009-01-01
Type Conference Paper
Format pdf