[SydPhil] Notification: Cristian Mariani @ Thu 30 May 2019 15:00 - 16:30 (AEST) (Current Projects)

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Wed May 29 15:00:11 AEST 2019

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Title: Cristian Mariani
Derivative Metaphysical Indeterminacy
and the Ontology of Quantum Mechanics

Metaphysical indeterminacy is a kind of indeterminacy that cannot be  
explained away just by referring to a lack of knowledge or to semantic  
indecision. In an influential paper, Elizabeth Barnes (2014) has defended  
the following conditional claim: if there is metaphysical indeterminacy,  
then it cannot be only at the derivative level of reality. The underlying  
intuition behind this, as she has it, is that «if you’ve got determinate  
components and combine them in determinate ways, there’s nowhere for  
indeterminacy to come from». In order to argue for this claim, Barnes  
relies on two principles, that I shall call Maximal Completeness and  
Determinate Link. According to the former principle, a complete description  
of a world w is a maximal bivalent assignment of truth values to every  
sentence at w. According to Determinate Link, the determination link  
between more and less fundamental levels of reality is such to preserve  
determinacy from one level to the other. The aim of this paper is to argue  
against Barnes’ conditional claim. My strategy is two-fold. First, I argue  
that the Determinate Link can be rejected, for in the presence of  
indeterminacy it is a substantive issue whether or not the relation that  
connects different levels of reality is determinacy preserving. Second, I  
provide concrete examples, coming from the philosophy of physics, of how we  
can have, contra Barnes’ conclusions, metaphysical indeterminacy in the  
derivative ontology, and yet no indeterminacy at the fundamental level.

When: Thu 30 May 2019 15:00 – 16:30 Eastern Australia Time - Sydney
Calendar: Current Projects
     * Kristie Miller- creator

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