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  1. Space–Time Philosophy Reconstructed Via Massive Nordström Scalar Gravities? Laws Vs. Geometry, Conventionality, and Underdetermination.J. Brian Pitts - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 53:73-92.
    What if gravity satisfied the Klein-Gordon equation? Both particle physics from the 1920s-30s and the 1890s Neumann-Seeliger modification of Newtonian gravity with exponential decay suggest considering a "graviton mass term" for gravity, which is _algebraic_ in the potential. Unlike Nordström's "massless" theory, massive scalar gravity is strictly special relativistic in the sense of being invariant under the Poincaré group but not the 15-parameter Bateman-Cunningham conformal group. It therefore exhibits the whole of Minkowski space-time structure, albeit only indirectly concerning volumes. Massive (...)
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  • Permanent Underdetermination From Approximate Empirical Equivalence in Field Theory: Massless and Massive Scalar Gravity, Neutrino, Electromagnetic, Yang–Mills and Gravitational Theories.J. Brian Pitts - 2010 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (2):259-299.
    Classical and quantum field theory provide not only realistic examples of extant notions of empirical equivalence, but also new notions of empirical equivalence, both modal and occurrent. A simple but modern gravitational case goes back to the 1890s, but there has been apparently total neglect of the simplest relativistic analog, with the result that an erroneous claim has taken root that Special Relativity could not have accommodated gravity even if there were no bending of light. The fairly recent acceptance of (...)
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  • Conventionalism, Structuralism and Neo-Kantianism in Poincaré’s Philosophy of Science.Milena Ivanova - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 52 (Part B):114-122.
    Poincaré is well known for his conventionalism and structuralism. However, the relationship between these two theses and their place in Poincaré׳s epistemology of science remain puzzling. In this paper I show the scope of Poincaré׳s conventionalism and its position in Poincaré׳s hierarchical approach to scientific theories. I argue that for Poincaré scientific knowledge is relational and made possible by synthetic a priori, empirical and conventional elements, which, however, are not chosen arbitrarily. By examining his geometric conventionalism, his hierarchical account of (...)
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  • Conventionalism About What? Where Duhem and Poincaré Part Ways.Milena Ivanova - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 54:80-89.
    This paper examines whether, and in what contexts, Duhem’s and Poincaré’s views can be regarded as conventionalist or structural realist. After analysing the three different contexts in which conventionalism is attributed to them – in the context of the aim of science, the underdetermination problem and the epistemological status of certain principles – I show that neither Duhem’s nor Poincaré’s arguments can be regarded as conventionalist. I argue that Duhem and Poincaré offer different solutions to the problem of theory choice, (...)
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  • Groups in Mind.David Hilbert & Nick Huggett - 2006 - Philosophy of Science 73 (5):765-777.
    We consider the question of the manner of the internalization of the geometry and topology of physical space in the mind, both the mechanism of internalization and precisely what structures are internalized. Though we will not argue for the point here, we agree with the long tradition which holds that an understanding of this issue is crucial for addressing many metaphysical and epistemological questions concerning space.
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  • Theory (In-)Equivalence and Conventionalism in F(R) Gravity.Patrick M. Duerr - 2021 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 88:10-29.
  • From Jurisprudence to Mechanics: Jacobi, Reech, and Poincaré on Convention.María de Paz - 2018 - Science in Context 31 (2):223-250.
    ArgumentThis paper aims at understanding the concept of convention in mechanics as a notion transferred from the field of jurisprudence. This enables us to clarify it as a new epistemic category having a pertinent role in the transformation of mechanics in the nineteenth century. Such understanding permits a separation from linguistic and arbitrary conventions, thus highlighting its epistemic features and not transforming fundamental principles into mere arbitrary agreements. After addressing the main references in the literature discussing the role of convention (...)
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  • String Dualities and Empirical Equivalence.Richard Dawid - 2017 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 59:21-29.
    String dualities establish empirical equivalence between theories that often look entirely different with respect to their basic ontology and physical structure. Therefore, they represent a particularly interesting example of empirical equivalence in physics. However, the status of duality relations in string physics differs substantially from the traditional understanding of the role played by empirical equivalence. The paper specifies three important differences and argues that they are related to a substantially altered view on the underdetermination of theory building.
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  • Quantum Mechanics Does Not Require the Continuity of Space.E. B. Davies - 2003 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 34 (2):319-328.
  • Black, White and Gray: Quine on Convention.Yemima Ben-Menahem - 2005 - Synthese 146 (3):245-282.
    This paper examines Quine’s web of belief metaphor and its role in his various responses to conventionalism. Distinguishing between two versions of conventionalism, one based on the under-determination of theory, the other associated with a linguistic account of necessary truth, I show how Quine plays the two versions of conventionalism against each other. Some of Quine’s reservations about conventionalism are traced back to his 1934 lectures on Carnap. Although these lectures appear to endorse Carnap’s conventionalism, in exposing Carnap’s failure to (...)
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  • Underdetermination and the Argument From Indirect Confirmation.Sorin Bangu - 2006 - Ratio 19 (3):269–277.
    In this paper I criticize one of the most convincing recent attempts to resist the underdetermination thesis, Laudan’s argument from indirect confirmation. Laudan highlights and rejects a tacit assumption of the underdetermination theorist, namely that theories can be confirmed only by empirical evidence that follows from them. He shows that once we accept that theories can also be confirmed indirectly, by evidence not entailed by them, the skeptical conclusion does not follow. I agree that Laudan is right to reject this (...)
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