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GR as a classical spin-2 theory?

Linnemann, Niels and Smeenk, Chris and Baker, Mark Robert (2023) GR as a classical spin-2 theory? Philosophy of Science. ISSN 1539-767X


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The self-interaction spin-2 approach to general relativity (GR) has been extremely influential in the particle physics community. Leaving no doubt regarding its heuristic value, we argue that a view of the metric field of GR as nothing but a stand-in for a self-coupling field in flat spacetime runs into a dilemma: either the view is physically incomplete in so far as it requires recourse to GR after all, or it leads to an absurd multiplication of alternative viewpoints on GR rendering any understanding of the metric field as nothing but a spin-2 field in flat spacetime unjustified.

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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Linnemann, Nielsnielslinnemann@aol.com0000-0002-3695-8611
Smeenk, Chriscsmeenk2@uwo.ca0000-0002-6101-0048
Baker, Mark Robertbaker9@rose-hulman.edu0000-0003-3641-0020
Keywords: general relativity; spin-2; theory interpretation
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
Depositing User: Niels Linnemann
Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2024 17:56
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2024 17:56
Item ID: 23196
Journal or Publication Title: Philosophy of Science
Official URL:
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1017/psa.2023.56
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
Date: 2023
ISSN: 1539-767X

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