Feynman's Diagrams, Pictorial Representations and Styles of Scientific Thinking

Abstract

In this paper we argue that the different positions taken by Dyson and Feynman on Feynman diagrams’ representational role depend on different styles of scientific thinking. We begin by criticizing 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 (DDI), where “models” are to be interpreted as inferential, non-representational devices constructed in given social contexts by the community of physicists.

Links

PhilArchive

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

  • Only published works are available at libraries.

Similar books and articles

Pictures and pedagogy: The role of diagrams in Feynman's early lectures.Ari Gross - 2012 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 43 (3):184-194.
Why feynman diagrams represent.Letitia Meynell - 2008 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 22 (1):39 – 59.
Interpreting Feynman diagrams as visualized models.Adrian Wüthrich - 2012 - Spontaneous Generations 6 (1):172-181.
Haunted by the Spectre of Virtual Particles: A Philosophical Reconsideration.Tobias Fox - 2008 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 39 (1):35-51.
The Schrödinger equation in quantum field theory.Jamal Nazrul Islam - 1994 - Foundations of Physics 24 (5):593-630.
Reading Feynman Into Nanotechnology.Christopher P. Toumey - 2008 - Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology 12 (3):133-168.
Quantum probability and operational statistics.Stanley Gudder - 1990 - Foundations of Physics 20 (5):499-527.

Analytics

Added to PP
2017-02-10

Downloads
354 (#57,748)

6 months
61 (#78,526)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author Profiles

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

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations