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The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Mathematics and Logic$
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Stewart Shapiro

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195148770

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2005

DOI: 10.1093/0195148770.001.0001

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Mathematics—Application and Applicability

Mathematics—Application and Applicability

(p.625) Mathematics—Application and Applicability
The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Mathematics and Logic

Mark Steiner (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses various senses in which mathematics is applied to the material world. It distinguishes between canonical and noncanonical applications of mathematics, the former being those for which the mathematics was developed to deal with in the first place. It also distinguishes between empirical and nonempirical applications, thus yielding four different kinds of applications. Examples of each are provided, and philosophical problems connected with each are treated.

Keywords:   mathematics, application, empirical

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