PhilSci Archive

Does General Relativity Highlight Necessary Connections in Nature?

Vassallo, Antonio (2021) Does General Relativity Highlight Necessary Connections in Nature? [Preprint]

[img]
Preview
Text
Efenom.pdf

Download (402kB) | Preview

Abstract

The dynamics of general relativity is encoded in a set of ten differential equations, the so-called Einstein field equations. It is usually believed that Einstein's equations represent a physical law describing the coupling of spacetime with material fields. However, just six of these equations actually describe the coupling mechanism: the remaining four represent a set of differential relations known as Bianchi identities. The paper discusses the physical role that the Bianchi identities play in general relativity, and investigates whether these identities --qua part of a physical law-- highlight some kind of a posteriori necessity in a Kripkean sense. The inquiry shows that general relativistic physics has an interesting bearing on the debate about the metaphysics of the laws of nature.


Export/Citation: EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII/Text Citation (Chicago) | HTML Citation | OpenURL
Social Networking:
Share |

Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Vassallo, Antonioantonio.vassallo1977@gmail.com0000-0002-1846-5362
Additional Information: Accepted for publication in Synthese
Keywords: General relativity, laws of nature, necessity, Bianchi identities, Humeanism, background independence
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
Depositing User: Antonio Vassallo
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2021 20:09
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2021 20:09
Item ID: 18573
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1007/s11229-020-03009-z
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
Date: 2021
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/18573

Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Monthly Downloads for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Altmetric.com

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item