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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
    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 11:19
    Item ID: 5076
    URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/5076

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