The World View of Contemporary Physics
Does It Need a New Metaphysics?
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Although early twentieth century physics produced two revolutionary new conceptions of the nature of the physical universe—relativity theory and quantum theory—more recent developments in the physical sciences have made it imperative for physicists to re-examine the older world view of physics and the assumptions upon which it was based. However, theorizing about the nature and status of reality has been the province of philosophers for centuries. Philosophers, trained in metaphysics, provided a different perspective for viewing and a unique method for solving some of these problems. Ideally, therefore, both philosophers and physicists should work together in dialogue fashion on this important issue.
These two groups come together for the first time in this book to examine the questions: What is the world view of contemporary physics? Does it need a new metaphysics? If so, what kind of metaphysics does it need? Internationally known scholars, including Ilya Prigogine and Fritjof Capra, who are recognized as experts in this interdisciplinary field, address such related topics as the nature of the mind, our place in society, and the nature of ethics.
Richard F. Kitchener is Professor of Philosophy at Colorado State University.