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Scientific Representation: Against Similarity and Isomorphism

Suárez, Mauricio (2003) Scientific Representation: Against Similarity and Isomorphism. UNSPECIFIED.

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    Abstract

    I argue against theories that attempt to reduce scientific representation to similarity or isomorphism. These reductive theories aim to radically naturalise the notion of representation, since they treat scientist’s purposes and intentions as non-essential to representation. I distinguish between the means and the constituents of representation, and I argue that similarity and isomorphism are common but not universal means of representation. I then present four other arguments to show that similarity and isomorphism can not be the constituents of scientific representation. I finish by looking at the prospects for weakened versions of these theories, and I argue that only those that abandon the aim to radically naturalise scientific representation are likely to be successful.


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    Item Type: Other
    Keywords: representation, idealization, models, realism, structuralism
    Subjects: General Issues > Structure of Theories
    General Issues > Models and Idealization
    General Issues > Realism/Anti-realism
    Depositing User: Mauricio Suarez
    Date Deposited: 16 Jan 2004
    Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 11:12
    Item ID: 1571
    Public Domain: No
    URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/1571

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