On Physics' Faustian Bargain with Mathematics
Standard physicalism is repudiated by Susan Schneider on the grounds that the science of physics at physicalism's foundation is individuated by mathematics, revealing that science is abstract rather than concrete. She seeks to remedy the situation for physics, though not for physicalism, with a panprotopsychist variant of panpyschism. Her approach is clever and well-developed, but I believe it suffers from at least two flaws. First, with few exceptions individuation is the wrong tool for the discovery of a thing's nature; second, panpsychism and its proto variant have problems no less worrisome than those attributed to standard physicalism. Moreover, once developed it is questionable whether a surviving panpsychism is distinct from a less troubled emergentism.
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Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Email: [email protected]
Publication date: January 1, 2017