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THE PURLOINED REFERENT: LAVOISIER AND THE DISAPPEARANCE OF PHLOGISTON

Lewowicz, Lucía (2009) THE PURLOINED REFERENT: LAVOISIER AND THE DISAPPEARANCE OF PHLOGISTON. [Preprint]

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Abstract

In this paper, I challenge the long-established view that the term phlogiston fails to refer. After a close examination of the reference of phlogiston during Lavoisier’s Chemical Revolution, I show that it referred throughout to a natural substance, fire matter. I state that Lavoisier eliminated the term but not its referent, which he renamed caloric, and I claim that it is in the historical and cultural context of the Chemical Revolution that the Lavoisier’s intentions can be understood.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Lewowicz, Lucía
Keywords: Phlogiston; Chemical Revolution; Lavoisier; reference; referent.
Subjects: General Issues > Theory Change
General Issues > History of Science Case Studies
Depositing User: Lucía Lewowicz
Date Deposited: 31 Dec 2009
Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 15:19
Item ID: 5076
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/5076

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