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Michel Bitbol
University of Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne
  1.  3
    Is the Life-World Reduction Sufficient in Quantum Physics?Michel Bitbol - 2020 - Continental Philosophy Review 54 (4):563-580.
    According to Husserl, the epochè must be left incomplete. It is to be performed step by step, thus defining various layers of “reduction.” In phenomenology at least two such layers can be distinguished: the life-world reduction, and the transcendental reduction. Quantum physics was born from a particular variety of the life-world reduction: reduction to observables according to Heisenberg, and reduction to classical-like properties of experimental devices according to Bohr. But QBism has challenged this limited version of the phenomenological reduction advocated (...)
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  2. Mécanique Quantique: Une Introduction Philosophique.Michel Bitbol - 1996 - Flammarion-Pere Castor.
    Le présent tome traite de la mécanique quantique non relativiste. Il comprend, outre ses fondements, de multiples applications de la mécanique quantique dans une plus large mesure que dans les cours généraux. Dans leur exposé des questions générales, les auteurs dégagent au maximum l'essence physique de la théorie, à partir de laquelle ils développent l'appareil mathématique. Contrairement au schéma habituel allant des théorèmes mathématiques relatifs aux opérateurs linéaires, les auteurs déduisent les exigences mathématiques auxquelles doivent répondre les opérateurs et les (...)
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  3. Science as If Situation Mattered.Michel Bitbol - 2002 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 1 (2):181-224.
    When he formulated the program of neurophenomenology, Francisco Varela suggested a balanced methodological dissolution of the hard problem of consciousness. I show that his dissolution is a paradigm which imposes itself onto seemingly opposite views, including materialist approaches. I also point out that Varela's revolutionary epistemological ideas are gaining wider acceptance as a side effect of a recent controversy between hermeneutists and eliminativists. Finally, I emphasize a structural parallel between the science of consciousness and the distinctive features of quantum mechanics. (...)
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  4.  54
    Listening From Within.Claire Petitmengin & Michel Bitbol - 2009 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 16 (10-12):10-12.
    In this paper we list the various criticisms that have been formulated against introspection, from Auguste Comte denying that consciousness can observe itself, to recent criticisms of the reliability of first person descriptions. We show that these criticisms rely on the one hand on poor knowledge of the introspective process, and on the other hand on a naïve conception of scientific objectivity. Two kinds of answers are offered: the first one is grounded on a refined description of the process of (...)
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  5.  12
    Is the Life-World Reduction Sufficient in Quantum Physics?Michel Bitbol - 2021 - Continental Philosophy Review (4):1-18.
    According to Husserl, the epochè must be left incomplete. It is to be performed step by step, thus defining various layers of “reduction.” In phenomenology at least two such layers can be distinguished: the life-world reduction, and the transcendental reduction. Quantum physics was born from a particular variety of the life-world reduction: reduction to observables according to Heisenberg, and reduction to classical-like properties of experimental devices according to Bohr. But QBism has challenged this limited version of the phenomenological reduction advocated (...)
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  6.  19
    The Tangled Dialectic of Body and Consciousness: A Metaphysical Counterpart of Radical Neurophenomenology.Michel Bitbol - 2021 - Constructivist Foundations 16 (2):141-151.
    Context: Varela’s neurophenomenology was conceived from the outset as a criticism and dissolution of the “hard problem” of the physical origin of consciousness. Indeed, the standard (….
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  7. Downward Causation Without Foundations.Michel Bitbol - 2012 - Synthese 185 (2):233-255.
    Emergence is interpreted in a non-dualist framework of thought. No metaphysical distinction between the higher and basic levels of organization is supposed, but only a duality of modes of access. Moreover, these modes of access are not construed as mere ways of revealing intrinsic patterns of organization: They are supposed to be constitutive of them, in Kant’s sense. The emergent levels of organization, and the inter-level causations as well, are therefore neither illusory nor ontologically real: They are objective in the (...)
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  8.  11
    A Phenomenological Ontology for Physics: Merleau-Ponty and Qbism.Michel Bitbol - 2020 - In H. Wiltsche & P. Berghofer (eds.), Phenomenological approaches to physics.
    Few researchers of the past made sense of the collapse of representations in the quantum domain, and looked for a new process of sense-making below the level of representations: the level of the phenomenology of perception and action; the level of the elaboration of knowledge out of experience. But some recent philosophical readings of quantum physics all point in this direction. They all recognize the fact that the quantum revolution is a revolution in our conception of knowledge. In these recent (...)
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  9. Ontology, Matter and Emergence.Michel Bitbol - 2007 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 6 (3):293-307.
    “Ontological emergence” of inherent high-level properties with causal powers is witnessed nowhere. A non-substantialist conception of emergence works much better. It allows downward causation, provided our concept of causality is transformed accordingly.
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  10. Schrödinger's Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics.Michel Bitbol - 1998 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 49 (2):329-331.
     
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  11. Some Steps Towards a Transcendental Deduction of Quantum Mechanics.Michel Bitbol - 1998 - Philosophia Naturalis 35:253-280.
    The two major options on which the current debate on the interpretation of quantum mechanics relies, namely realism and empiricism, are far from being exhaustive. There is at least one more position available, which is metaphysically as agnostic as empiricism, but which shares with realism a committment to considering the structure of theories as highly significant. The latter position has been named transcendentalism after Kant. In this paper, a generalized version of Kant's method is used. This yields a reasoning that (...)
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  12.  68
    Reflective Metaphysics: Understanding Quantum Mechanics From a Kantian Standpoint.Michel Bitbol - 2010 - Philosophica 83:53-83.
  13. On the Possibility and Reality of Introspection.Michel Bitbol & Claire Petitmengin - 2013 - Kairos. Revista de Filosofia and Ciência 6:173-198.
  14.  30
    Consciousness, Being and Life: Phenomenological Approaches to Mindfulness.Michel Bitbol - 2019 - Journal of Phenomenological Psychology 50 (2):127-161.
    A phenomenological view of contemplative disciplines is presented. However, studying mindfulness by phenomenology is at odds with both neurobiological and anthropological approaches. It involves the first-person standpoint, the openness of being-in-the-world, the umwelt of the meditator, instead of assessing her neural processes and behaviors from a neutral, distanced, third-person standpoint. It then turns out that phenomenology cannot produce a discourse about mindfulness. Phenomenology rather induces a cross-fertilization between the state of mindfulness and its own methods of mental cultivation. A comparison (...)
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  15. Is Consciousness Primary?Michel Bitbol - unknown
    Six arguments against the view that conscious experience derives from a material basis are reviewed. These arguments arise from epistemology, phenomenology, neuropsychology, and philosophy of quantum mechanics. It turns out that any attempt at proving that conscious experience is ontologically secondary to material objects both fails and brings out its methodological and existential primacy. No alternative metaphysical view is espoused (not even a variety of Spinoza’s attractive double-aspect theory). Instead, an alternative stance, inspired from F. Varela’s neurophenomenology is advocated. This (...)
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  16. Non-Representationalist Theories of Knowledge and Quantum Mechanics.Michel Bitbol - 2001 - SATS 2 (1):37-61.
    Quantum Mechanics has imposed strain on traditional (dualist and representationalist) epistemological conceptions. An alternative was offered by Bohr and Heisenberg, according to whom natural science does not describe nature, but rather the interplay between nature and ourselves. But this was only a suggestion. In this paper, a systematic development of the Bohr-Heisenberg conception is outlined, by way of a comparison with the modern self-organizational theories of cognition. It is shown that a perfectly consistent non-representationalist (and/or relational) reading of quantum mechanics (...)
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  17.  28
    Enacting Enaction: A Dialectic Between Knowing and Being.Sebastjan Vörös & Michel Bitbol - 2017 - Constructivist Foundations 13 (1):31-40.
    The notion of “enaction,” as originally expounded by Varela and his colleagues, was introduced into cognitive science as part of a broad philosophical framework combining science, phenomenology, and Buddhist philosophy. Its intention was to help the researchers in the field avoid falling prey to various dichotomies bedeviling modern philosophy and science, and serve as a “conceptual evocation” of “non-duality” or “groundlessness: an ongoing and irreducible circulation between the flux of lived experience and the search of reason for conceptual invariants, is (...)
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  18. Consciousness, Situations, and the Measurement Problem of Quantum Mechanics.Michel Bitbol - unknown
    There are two versions of the putative connection between consciousness and the measurement problem of quantum mechanics : consciousness as the cause of state vector reduction, and state vector reduction as the physical basis of consciousness. In this article, these controversial ideas are neither accepted uncritically, nor rejected from the outset in the name of some prejudice about objective knowledge. Instead, their origin is sought in our most cherished (but disputable) beliefs about the place of mind and consciousness in the (...)
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  19.  57
    Perspectival Realism and Quantum Mechanics.Michel Bitbol - unknown
    A complete reappraisal of the philosophical meaning of Everett's interpretation of quantum mechanics is carried out, by analysing carefully the role of the concept of "observer" in physics. It is shown that Everett's interpretation is the limiting case of a series of conceptions of the measurement problem which leave less and less of the observer out of the quantum description of the measuring interaction. This limiting case, however, should not be considered as one wherein nothing is left outside the description. (...)
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  20. Physique et philosophie de l'esprit.Michel Bitbol - 2004 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 194 (1):126-127.
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  21. On Pure Reflection.Michel Bitbol & Claire Petitmengin - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (2):24-37.
  22. Physical Relations or Functional Relations? A Non-Metaphysical Construal of Rovelli’s Relational Quantum Mechanics.Michel Bitbol - unknown
    Rovelli’s RQM is first characterized by contrast with both Everett’s and Bohr’s interpretations of quantum mechanics. Then, it is shown that a basic difficulty arises from the choice of formulating RQM in a naturalistic framework. Even though, according to Rovelli’s interpretation, statements about the world only make sense relative to certain naturalized observers described by means of quantum mechanics, this very meta-statement seems to make sense relative to a sort of super-observer which does not partake of the naturalized status of (...)
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  23. On Pure Reflection A Reply to Dan Zahavi.Michel Bitbol & C. Petitmengin - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (2):24-37.
  24. Physique quantique et cognition.Michel Bitbol - forthcoming - Revue Internationale de Philosophie.
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  25. Physique Et Philosophie de L'Esprit.Michel Bitbol - 2000
    Toute science, admet-on, commence par détacher un objet en le rendant indépendant des sujets et des situations. Mais cette conception étroite de la connaissance scientifique laisse subsister des zones d'ombre. La conscience n'est pas un objet. Elle est ce sans quoi rien ne pourrait être pris pour objet. La conscience n'est pas détachable des sujets, car elle s'identifie à ce qui est vécu par un sujet. De façon analogue, en physique quantique, un phénomène n'est pas dissociable de son contexte expérimental, (...)
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  26. Materialism, Stances, and Open-Mindedness.Michel Bitbol - 2007 - In Bradley Monton (ed.), Images of Empiricism: Essays on Science and Stances, with a Reply From Bas C. Van Fraassen. Oxford University Press.
     
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  27. Erwin Schrödinger Philosophy and the Birth of Quantum Mechanics.Michel Bitbol, Olivier Darrigol & Institut Autrichien de Paris - 1992
  28.  10
    Lets Trust the (Skilled) Subject! A Reply to Froese, Gould and Seth.Claire Petitmengin & Michel Bitbol - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (2):90-97.
    The article by Froese, Gould and Seth is a survey rather than a commentary, dealing with the intertwined issues of the validity of first- person reports and of their interest for a science of consciousness. While acknowledging that experiential research has already produced promising results, the authors find that it has not yet produced 'killer experiments' providing a definitively positive answer to these two questions, and wonder what kind of experiment would allow it. Our response will address these two questions (...)
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  29.  75
    The Problem of Other Minds: A Debate Between Schrödinger and Carnap. [REVIEW]Michel Bitbol - 2004 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 3 (1):115-123.
    This paper reviews the debate between Carnap and Schrödinger about Hypothesis P (It is not only I who have perceptions and thoughts; other human beings have them too)–a hypothesis that underlies the possibility of doing science. For Schrödinger this hypothesis is not scientifically testable; for Carnap it is. But Schrödinger and Carnap concede too much to each other and miss an alternative understanding: science does not depend on an explicit hypothesis concerning what other human beings see and think; it is (...)
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  30.  21
    Quantum Mechanics as Generalised Theory of Probabilities.Michel Bitbol - unknown
    It is argued that quantum mechanics does not have merely a predictive function like other physical theories; it consists in a formalisation of the conditions of possibility of any prediction bearing upon phenomena whose circumstances of detection are also conditions of production. This is enough to explain its probabilistic status and theoretical structure.
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  31.  14
    Author’s Response: Metaphysics With No Metaphysical Commitment.Michel Bitbol - 2021 - Constructivist Foundations 16 (2):167-171.
    : I make explicit the status of the “quasi-metaphysics” associated with neurophenomenology in the target paper. Here, metaphysics serves as a therapy and as a guide, not as a picture of….
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  32. Traces of Objectivity: Causality and Probabilities in Quantum Physics.Michel Bitbol - 2011 - Diogenes 58 (4):30-57.
    It is pointed out that the probabilistic character of a theory does not indicate by itself a distancing with respect to the norms of objectification. Instead, the very structure of the calculation of probabilities utilised by this theory is capable of bearing the trace of a constitution of objectivity in Kant’s sense. Accordingly, the procedure of the constitution of objectivity is first studied in standard and in quantum cases with due reference to modern cognitive science. Then, an examination of the (...)
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  33. L'esprit et la matière.Erwin Schrödinger & Michel Bitbol - 1990 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 180 (4):714-716.
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  34. The Quantum Structure of Knowledge.Michel Bitbol - 2011 - Axiomathes 21 (2):357-371.
    This paper analyzes how conflicts of perspective are resolved in the field of the human sciences. Examples of such conflicts are the duality between the actor and spectator standpoints, or the duality of participancy between a form of social life and a socio-anthropological study of it. This type of duality look irreducible, because the conflicting positions express incompatible interests. Yet, the claim of incommensurability is excessive. There exists a level of mental activity at which dialogue and resolution are possible. Reaching (...)
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  35.  94
    Heat, Temperature and Phenomenal Concepts.Isabelle Peschard & Michel Bitbol - 2008 - In Edmond Wright (ed.), The Case for Qualia. MIT Press. pp. 155.
    The reduction of the concept of heat to that of molecular kinetic energy is recurrently presented as lending analogical support to the project of reduction of phenomenal concepts to physical concepts. The claimed analogy draws on the way the use of the concept of heat is attached to the experience in first person of a certain sensation. The reduction of this concept seems to prove the possibility to reduce discourse involving phenomenal concepts to a scientific description of neural activity. But (...)
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  36. Facts and Time in Quantum Mechanics: A Study in Phenomenology and Pragmatics.Michel Bitbol - 2010 - Manuscrito 33 (1):73-121.
    The concept of well-defined and mutually exclusive objective facts has no counterpart in the formalism of standard quantum mechanics. Bypassing decoherence theories, we then inquire into the conditions of use of this concept of objective fact, and find that it is grounded on the possibility of making reference to spatio-temporal continuants and permanent properties. Since these conditions are not fulfilled within the quantum paradigm, one must look for appropriate substitutes. Two such substitutes are discussed. The first one is phenomenal fact (...)
     
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  37.  37
    Panpsychism in the First Person.Michel Bitbol - 2016 - In Harald A. Wiltsche & Sonja Rinofner-Kreidl (eds.), Analytic and Continental Philosophy: Methods and Perspectives. Proceedings of the 37th International Wittgenstein Symposium. De Gruyter. pp. 231-246.
  38.  8
    Maintenant la finitude. Une critique épistémologique du matérialisme spéculatif.Michel Bitbol - 2020 - Philosophiques 47 (2):417.
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  39.  23
    Author's Response: Not Haiography but Ideational Biography: In Defense of Existential Enaction.Sebastjan Vörös & Michel Bitbol - 2017 - Constructivist Foundations 13 (1):52-58.
    First, we argue that our contribution was not meant as a mythization of Varela’s work, but rather as a Varelian-inspired existential reconstrual of enaction. Second, we expand and elaborate on the notion of dialectics and the role of Buddhist philosophy. Third, we briefly formulate three main domains of investigation for enacting enaction.
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  40.  20
    Transcendental Structuralism in Physics: An Alternative to Structural Realism.Michel Bitbol - unknown
    In physics, structures are good candidates for the role of transparadigmatic invariants, which entities can no longer play. This is why structural realism looks more credible than standard entity realism. But why should structures be stable, rather than entities? Here, structural realists have no answer ; they content themselves with the mere observation that this is how things stand. By contrast, transcendental structuralism can easily make sense of this fact. Indeed, it shows that when knowledge bears on phenomena, namely on (...)
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  41.  10
    Two Aspects of Śūnyatā in Quantum Physics: Relativity of Properties and Quantum Non-Separability.Michel Bitbol - 2019 - In Siddheshwar Rameshwar Bhatt (ed.), Quantum Reality and Theory of Śūnya. Springer. pp. 93-117.
    The so-called paradoxes of quantum physics are easily disposed of as soon as one accepts that there are no such things as intrinsically existing particles and their intrinsic properties, but that both particles and properties are relational “observables.” Accordingly, quantum physics does not offer a “description of the outer world,” but rather a prescription about how to make probabilistic predictions within a participatory environment. The latter view looks quite radical with respect to standard Western Aristotelian ontology; but it looks natural (...)
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  42.  22
    Mathematical Demonstration and Experimental Activity: A Wittgensteinian Philosophy of Physics.Michel Bitbol - 2018 - Philosophical Investigations 41 (2):188-203.
    This article aims at reducing the gap between mathematics and physics from a Wittgensteinian point of view. This gap is usually characterized by two discriminating features. The propositions of physics assert something which might be false; they have a hypothetical character. On the contrary, since mathematical propositions are rules that condition the form of assertions, they remain immune from falsification. The propositions of physics refer to facts that may confirm or refute them. On the contrary, since mathematical propositions have no (...)
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  43. Holism and Iconicity in Physics Papers Read at Linacre College, Oxford, 17 November 1990.Julian B. Barbour, Michel Bitbol, Arthur I. Miller & Rom Harré - 1990 - [S.N.].
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  44. Aux Rives de l'Île de la Raison Meyerson Et la Physique Quantique.Michel Bitbol - 2010 - Corpus: Revue de philosophie 58:81-97.
     
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  45. CONSTITUTING OBJECTIVITY The Western Ontario Series in Philosophy of Science.Michel Bitbol, Jean Petitot & Pierre Kerszberg (eds.) - 2009
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  46. On Life Beneath the Subject/Object Duality A Reply to Pierre Steiner.Michel Bitbol & C. Petitmengin - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (2):125-127.
     
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  47.  1
    Physique Et Réalité: Un Débat Avec Bernard D'espagnat.Bernard D' Espagnat, Michel Bitbol & Sandra Laugier - 1997 - Atlantica Séguier Frontières.
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  48. Réalité donnée, réalité construite. À propos d’un argument de Searle.Michel Bitbol - 2008 - Cahiers de Philosophie de L’Université de Caen 45:39.
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  49. Wittgenstein Et les Mathématiques.Michel Bitbol (ed.) - 2004 - T.E.R..
    Les études que nous rassemblons ici font écho aux débats les plus récents sur la philosophie des mathématiques de Wittgenstein, qui est bien certainement l'aspect le plus controversé de son œuvre. Elles sont, pour l'essentiel, consacrées au statut et aux fonctions des preuves mathématiques et aux "réactions" du philosophe aux théorèmes de Gödel. C'est dire qu'elles tournent autour de l'anti-platonisme foncier de Wittgenstein en philosophie des mathématiques et de son refus catégorique de toute méta-mathématique. E. R.
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  50. La nature et les Grecs, « La clôture de la représentation ».Erwin Schrödinger & Michel Bitbol - 1993 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 183 (4):740-741.
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