Twenty years ago now, Jenann Ismael wrote a fascinating little article called “Curie’s Principle” (1997 Synthese), which discussed a symm...
Curie’s Hazard: From Electromagnetism to Symmetry Violation
- Citation data:
Erkenntnis, ISSN: 0165-0106, Vol: 81, Issue: 5, Page: 1011-1029
- Publication Year:
- Arts and Humanities; Mathematics
- Most Recent Blog Mention
Pierre Curie claimed that a symmetry of a cause must be found in the produced effects. This paper shows why this principle works in Curie’s example of the electrostatics of central fields, but fails in many others. The failure of Curie’s claim is then shown to be of special empirical interest, in that this failure underpins the experimental discovery of parity violation and of CP violation in the twentieth century.