Mass‐energy‐momentum: Only there because of spacetime

British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (3):453-488 (2011)
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Abstract

I describe how relativistic field theory generalizes the paradigm property of material systems, the possession of mass, to the requirement that they have a mass–energy–momentum density tensor T µ associated with them. I argue that T µ does not represent an intrinsic property of matter. For it will become evident that the definition of T µ depends on the metric field g µ in a variety of ways. Accordingly, since g µ represents the geometry of spacetime itself, the properties of mass, stress, energy, and momentum should not be seen as intrinsic properties of matter, but as relational properties that material systems have only in virtue of their relation to spacetime structure

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Dennis Lehmkuhl
Universität Bonn

Citations of this work

Have we Lost Spacetime on the Way? Narrowing the Gap between General Relativity and Quantum Gravity.Baptiste Le Bihan & Niels Siegbert Linnemann - 2019 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 65 (C):112-121.
Two miracles of general relativity.James Read, Harvey R. Brown & Dennis Lehmkuhl - 2018 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 64:14-25.
Relations.Fraser MacBride - 2016 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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Structural Realism.James Ladyman - 2014 - In Edward N. Zalta (ed.), The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Stanford, CA: The Metaphysics Research Lab.

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