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Regularity Comparativism about Mass in Newtonian Gravity

Martens, Niels C M (2017) Regularity Comparativism about Mass in Newtonian Gravity. [Preprint]

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Abstract

Comparativism---the view that mass ratios are not grounded in absolute masses---faces a challenge by Baker which suggests that absolute masses are empirically meaningful. Regularity comparativism uses a liberalised version of the Mill-Ramsey-Lewis Best Systems Account to have both the Laws of Newtonian Gravity and the absolute mass scale supervene on a comparativist Humean mosaic as a package deal. I discuss three objections to this view, and conclude that it is untenable. The most severe problem is that once we have reduced away the absolute masses, there is nothing that stops us from also reducing the mass ratios.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Martens, Niels C Mmartens@physik.rwth-aachen.de0000-0002-2839-1387
Additional Information: Forthcoming in Philosophy of Science 84(5), 2017
Keywords: Comparativism about mass - Regularity Relationalism - Mill-Ramsey-Lewis Best Systems Account - Newtonian Gravity - Regularity Eliminativism
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Classical Physics
General Issues > Reductionism/Holism
Depositing User: Dr Niels C M Martens
Date Deposited: 07 Sep 2017 14:25
Last Modified: 07 Sep 2017 14:25
Item ID: 13402
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1086/694086
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Classical Physics
General Issues > Reductionism/Holism
Date: 4 May 2017
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/13402

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