Bueno, Otávio (2002) Is It Possible to Nominalize Quantum Mechanics? [Preprint]
Hartry Field  has developed an interesting nominalization strategy for Newtonian gravitation theory -- a strategy that reformulates the theory without quantification over abstract entities. According to David Malament , Field�s strategy cannot be extended to quantum mechanics (QM), and so it only has a limited scope. In a recent work, Mark Balaguer has responded to Malament�s challenge, by indicating how QM can be nominalized, and by �doing much of the work needed to provide the nominalization� (Balaguer , 114). In this paper, I critically assess Balaguer�s proposal, and argue that it ultimately fails. Balaguer�s strategy is incompatible with a number of interpretations of QM, in particular with Bas van Fraassen�s version of the modal interpretation. And given that Balaguer�s strategy invokes physically real propensities, it is unclear whether it is even compatible with nominalism. I conclude that the nominalization of QM still remains a major problem for the nominalist.
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