Revisiting the Applicability of Metaphysical Identity in Quantum Mechanics

Newton da Costa, Christian de Ronde

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


We discuss the hypothesis that the debate about the interpretation of the orthodox formalism of quantum mechanics (QM) might have been misguided right from the start by a biased metaphysical interpretation of the formalism and its inner mathematical relations. In particular, we focus on the orthodox interpretation of the congruence relation, '=', which relates equivalent classes of different mathematical representations of a vector in Hilbert space, in terms of metaphysical identity. We will argue that this seemingly "common sense" interpretation, at the semantic level, has severe difficulties when considering the syntactic level of the theory.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProbing the Meaning and Structure of Quantum Mechanics (vol. 3)
PublisherWorld Scientific Publishing
Publication statusPublished - 17 Sep 2016

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