Conventionality and Reality

Foundations of Physics 49 (12):1336-1354 (2019)
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The debate on the conventionality of simultaneity and the debate on the dimensionality of the world have been central in the philosophy of special relativity. The link between both debates however has rarely been explored. The purpose of this paper is to gauge what implications the former debate has for the latter. I show the situation to be much more subtle than was previously argued, and explain how the ontic versus epistemic distinction in the former debate impacts the latter. Despite claims to the contrary, I conclude that special relativity leaves the debate on the dimensionality of the world underdetermined.
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Archival date: 2020-02-27
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