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Tomasz Bigaj

Abstract

In the article the possibility of breaking the eigenvalue-eigenstate link in quantum mechanics is considered. An argument is presented to the effect that there are some non-maximal observables for which the implication from eigenstates to eigenvalues is not valid, i.e. such that although the probability of revealing certain value upon measurement is one, they don’t possess this value before the measurement. It is shown that the existence of such observables leads to contextuality, i.e. the thesis that one Hermitean operator can represent more than one physical observable. Finally, contextuality brought about by these considerations is compared with contextuality suggested by the Kochen-Specker paradox.

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Edited by Tomasz Bigaj and Christian Wüthrich

This book is a collection of essays whose topics center around relations between analytic metaphysics and modern physical theories. The contributions to the volume cover a broad spectrum of issues, ranging from metaphysical implications of selected physical theories (quantum mechanics, quantum field theory, general relativity, string theory etc.), to specific problems in scientifically-oriented analytic metaphysics, such as the problem of emergence and reduction, the part-whole relation, and the question of objecthood, properties and individuality on the fundamental level of reality. The authors of the contributions are philosophers of science, physicists and metaphysicians of international renown, and their work represents the cutting edge in modern metaphysics of physical sciences.

Contributors are: Tomasz Bigaj, Jessica Bloom, Nazim Bouatta, Jeremy Butterfield, Adam Caulton, Dennis Dieks, Mauro Dorato, Michael Esfeld, Steven French, Andreas Hüttemann, Marek Kuś, Douglas Kutach, Vincent Lam, Olimpia Lombardi, Kerry McKenzie, Thomas Møller-Nielsen, Matteo Morganti, Ioan Muntean, Dean Rickles, Antonio Vassallo, Jessica Wilson, Christian Wüthrich