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Underdetermination and the Problem of Identical Rivals

Magnus, P. D. (2002) Underdetermination and the Problem of Identical Rivals. [Preprint]

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This paper explores a connection between underdetermination and the identity conditions for theories: Must we provide the latter before enquiring into the former? Quine proposes that we call two theories identical if they are equivalent under a reconstrual of predicates, but this may mishandle important cases. Another proposal is to defer to the particular judgements of actual scientists. Consideration of an historical episode--- the alleged equivalence of wave and matrix mechanics--- shows that this second proposal also fails. Nevertheless, I suggest, we may enquire into underdetermination without a better candidate.

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Item Type: Preprint
Magnus, P. D.
Keywords: General Philosophy of Science, Structure of Theories, Underdetermination
Depositing User: Program Committee
Date Deposited: 23 Mar 2003
Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 15:11
Item ID: 1086
Date: 2002

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