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Identity in PhysicsA Historical, Philosophical, and Formal Analysis$
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Steven French and Décio Krause

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199278244

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2006

DOI: 10.1093/0199278245.001.0001

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Names, Nomological Objects and Quasets

Names, Nomological Objects and Quasets

(p.198) 5 Names, Nomological Objects and Quasets
Identity in Physics

Steven French (Contributor Webpage)

Décio Krause

Oxford University Press

This chapter begins with a broad discussion of the use of names in science and their role in physical theories. The philosophy of names is outlined, covering the ‘Descriptivist’, ‘Non-descriptivist’, and ‘Hybrid’ accounts. The claim that Kripke’s theory of rigidly designating names is tied to classical statistics is critically assessed, and it is argued that a form of the ‘Hybrid’ account can accommodate quantum particles understood as named individuals for which distinguishing descriptions cannot be given. Toraldo di Francia and Dalla Chiara’s theory of quasets is presented as the formal counterpart to this view. This is compared with Krause’s theory of quasi-sets in Chapter 7.

Keywords:   names, descriptivist, non-descriptivist, hybrid, causal theory, rigid designator, nomological objects, quaset theory

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