By: Nancy Cartwright
230 pages, text-figures, line drawings
In this sequence of philosophical essays about natural science, Nancy Cartwright argues that fundamental explanatory laws, the deepest and most admired successes of modern physics, do not in fact describe the regularities that exist in nature. Yet she is not 'anti-realist'. Rather, she draws a novel distinction, arguing that theoretical entities, and the complex and localized laws that describe them, can be interpreted realistically, but that the simple unifying laws of basic theory cannot.
The issues raised are very important and highly controversial ... I believe the book to be of importance in inviting philosophers to take a new look at the way physics is actually done, and what their reaction to that practice might be. M. L. G. Redhead, Philosophical Quarterly a significant addition to the literature W. H. Newton-Smith, Times Literary Supplement
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