Order and Organism

Steps Toward a Whiteheadian Philosophy of Mathematics and the Natural Sciences

By Murray Code

Paperback : 9780873959520, 265 pages, June 1985
Hardcover : 9780873959513, 265 pages, June 1985

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What is now needed is a way of thinking about the physical that is realistic in outlook but which departs radically from the mechanistic post-Galilean tradition. Since it seems clear that we can no longer take for granted the certainty and absolute objectivity of scientific knowledge, any alternative view must be able to do full justice to subjective modes of knowing.

Order and Organism shows how Alfred North Whitehead's thought can reconcile some of the most insistent demands of common sense with the esoteric results of modern physics and mathematics. Whitehead shows a way to resolve the perennial puzzle of why mathematics works. Under his view, it is possible to account for the necessity and uniqueness of mathematical theories without denying the fact that such theories often arise from the mathematician's essentially aesthetic interest in various kinds of pattern.

Murray Code is Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada.