PhilSci Archive

On the epistemological foundations of the law of the lever

Van Dyck, Maarten (2009) On the epistemological foundations of the law of the lever. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science, Part A, 40 (3). pp. 315-318.

[img]
Preview
PDF
PalmieriMach-rev.pdf - Accepted Version

Download (83kB)

Abstract

In this paper I challenge Paolo Palmieri’s reading of the Mach-Vailati debate on Archimedes’s proof of the law of the lever. I argue that the actual import of the debate concerns the possible epistemic (as opposed to merely pragmatic) role of mathematical arguments in empirical physics, and that construed in this light Vailati carries the upper hand.
This claim is defended by showing that Archimedes’s proof of the law of the lever is not a way of appealing to a non-empirical source of information, but a way of explicating the mathematical structure that can represent the empirical information at our disposal in the most general way.


Export/Citation: EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII/Text Citation (Chicago) | HTML Citation | OpenURL
Social Networking:
Share |

Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Van Dyck, Maartenmaarten.vandyck@ugent.be
Keywords: Ernst Mach, Giovanni Vailati, Archimedes, Law of the lever, Mathematical physics
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Classical Physics
General Issues > History of Philosophy of Science
General Issues > History of Science Case Studies
General Issues > Theory/Observation
Depositing User: Maarten Van Dyck
Date Deposited: 03 Apr 2014 19:50
Last Modified: 03 Apr 2014 19:50
Item ID: 10590
Journal or Publication Title: Studies in History and Philosophy of Science, Part A
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.shpsa.2009.06.001
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Classical Physics
General Issues > History of Philosophy of Science
General Issues > History of Science Case Studies
General Issues > Theory/Observation
Date: 2009
Page Range: pp. 315-318
Volume: 40
Number: 3
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/10590

Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Monthly Downloads for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Altmetric.com

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item