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  1. Kant Meets Cyberpunk.Eric Schwitzgebel - 2019 - Disputatio 11 (55).
    I defend a how-possibly argument for Kantian transcendental idealism, drawing on concepts from David Chalmers, Nick Bostrom, and the cyberpunk subgenre of science fiction. If we are artificial intelligences living in a virtual reality instantiated on a giant computer, then the fundamental structure of reality might be very different than we suppose. Indeed, since computation does not require spatial properties, spatiality might not be a feature of things as they are in themselves but instead only the way that things necessarily (...)
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  • How to Be a Substantivalist Without Getting Shifty About It.Zee R. Perry - 2017 - Philosophical Issues 27 (1):223-249.
    According to substantivalism, spacetime points and regions are real entities whose existence is not dependent on matter. In this paper, I motivate and defend a version of substantivalism which takes the totality of spacetime as fundamental, and show how this position avoids certain problem cases, in particular the objection from static Leibniz shifts, and better conforms to how we think about space in physics. I argue that, even though the static Leibniz shifts do not show ordinary substantivalism is committed to (...)
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  • Substantivalist and Relationalist Approaches to Spacetime.Oliver Pooley - 2013 - In Robert Batterman (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Physics. Oxford University Press.
    Substantivalists believe that spacetime and its parts are fundamental constituents of reality. Relationalists deny this, claiming that spacetime enjoys only a derivative existence. I begin by describing how the Galilean symmetries of Newtonian physics tell against both Newton's brand of substantivalism and the most obvious relationalist alternative. I then review the obvious substantivalist response to the problem, which is to ditch substantival space for substantival spacetime. The resulting position has many affinities with what are arguably the most natural interpretations of (...)
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  • Holes in Spacetime: Some Neglected Essentials.Trevor Teitel - 2019 - Journal of Philosophy (7):353-389.
    The hole argument purports to show that all spacetime theories of a certain form are indeterministic, including the General Theory of Relativity. The argument has given rise to an industry of searching for a metaphysics of spacetime that delivers the right modal implications to rescue determinism. In this paper, I first argue that certain prominent extant replies to the hole argument—namely, those that appeal to an essentialist doctrine about spacetime—fail to deliver the requisite modal implications. As part of my argument, (...)
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  • II—L. A. Paul: Categorical Priority and Categorical Collapse.L. A. Paul - 2013 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 87 (1):89-113.
    I explore some of the ways that assumptions about the nature of substance shape metaphysical debates about the structure of Reality. Assumptions about the priority of substance play a role in an argument for monism, are embedded in certain pluralist metaphysical treatments of laws of nature, and are central to discussions of substantivalism and relationalism. I will then argue that we should reject such assumptions and collapse the categorical distinction between substance and property.
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  • Algebraic Structuralism.Neil Dewar - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (7):1831-1854.
    This essay is about how the notion of “structure” in ontic structuralism might be made precise. More specifically, my aim is to make precise the idea that the structure of the world is given by the relations inhering in the world, in such a way that the relations are ontologically prior to their relata. The central claim is the following: one can do so by giving due attention to the relationships that hold between those relations, by making use of certain (...)
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  • Problem samodzielności stanowiska strukturalizmu czasoprzestrzennego.Damian Luty - 2016 - Semina Scientiarum 15:172-187.
    The aim of this paper is to place the considerations provided by a philosophical family of positions called “spacetime structuralism” in the context of the debate between classical views: substantivalism and relationism in the philosophy of spacetime. Altough this task was somehow tackled in the past by other researchers, they never stated most generally, what exactly the problem with spacetime structuralism as a standpoint was. I view that problem as the problem of its autonomy and potential reducibility to both of (...)
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  • Physical Geometry.James P. Binkoski - 2016 - Dissertation, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
    All physical theories, from classical Newtonian mechanics to relativistic quantum field theory, entail propositions concerning the geometric structure of spacetime. To give an example, the general theory of relativity entails that spacetime is curved, smooth, and four-dimensional. In this dissertation, I take the structural commitments of our theories seriously and ask: how is such structure instantiated in the physical world? Mathematically, a property like 'being curved' is perfectly well-defined insofar as we know what it means for a mathematical space to (...)
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  • Similarity Assessments, Spacetime, and the Gravitational Field: What Does the Metric Tensor Represent in General Relativity?Rey David - unknown
    In this paper I explore the dialectics underlying the choice between a geometrical and a field interpretation of the metric tensor gab in general relativity. My aim is to examine the role of a specific type of reasoning process in interpreting gab. In recent years, philosophers of physics have claimed that the problem of choosing between the two interpretations in question is somehow insubstantial. This appearance of insubstantiality, I contend, stems from a basic form of underdetermination that affects the concepts (...)
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  • A New Approach to the Relational‐Substantival Debate.Jill North - 2018 - Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 11:3-43.
    We should see the debate over the existence of spacetime as a debate about the fundamentality of spatiotemporal structure to the physical world. This is a non-traditional conception of the debate, which captures the spirit of the traditional one. At the same time, it clarifies the point of contention between opposing views and offsets worries that the dispute is stagnant or non-substantive. It also unearths a novel argument for substantivalism, given current physics. Even so, that conclusion can be overridden by (...)
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