The Nature of Representation in Feynman Diagrams

Perspectives on Science 26 (4):443-458 (2018)
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Abstract

After a brief presentation of Feynman diagrams, we criticizise the idea that Feynman diagrams can be considered to be pictures or depictions of actual physical processes. We then show that the best interpretation of the role they play in quantum field theory and quantum electrodynamics is captured by Hughes' Denotation, Deduction and Interpretation theory of models, where “models” are to be interpreted as inferential, non-representational devices constructed in given social contexts by the community of physicists.

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Author Profiles

Mauro Dorato
Università degli Studi Roma Tre
Emanuele Rossanese
Università degli Studi Roma Tre

Citations of this work

Cartography of the space of theories: An interpretational chart for fields that are both (dark) matter and spacetime.Niels C. M. Martens & Dennis Lehmkuhl - 2020 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 72:217-236.
Introduction.James Robert Brown - 2018 - Perspectives on Science 26 (4):419-422.

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References found in this work

Philosophical Investigations.Ludwig Wittgenstein - 1953 - New York, NY, USA: Wiley-Blackwell. Edited by G. E. M. Anscombe.
Models in Science (2nd edition).Roman Frigg & Stephan Hartmann - 2021 - The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Scientific Representation: Paradoxes of Perspective.Bas C. Van Fraassen - 2008 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press UK.
Mimesis as Make-Believe: On the Foundations of the Representational Arts.Kendall L. Walton - 1990 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 49 (2):161-166.

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