Empiricism and Relationism Intertwined: Hume and Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity

Citation data:

THEORIA. An International Journal for Theory, History and Foundations of Science, ISSN: 0495-4548, Vol: 31, Issue: 2, Page: 247-263

Publication Year:
2016
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Repository URL:
http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/12184
DOI:
10.1387/theoria.14846
Author(s):
Slavov, Matias Kimi
Publisher(s):
UPV/EHU Press; Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea / Universidad del País Vasco
Tags:
Arts and Humanities
article description
Einstein acknowledged that his reading of Hume influenced the development of his special theory of relativity. In this article, I juxtapose Hume's philosophy with Einstein's philosophical analysis related to his special relativity. I argue that there are two common points to be found in their writings, namely an empiricist theory of ideas and concepts, and a relationist ontology regarding space and time. The main thesis of this article is that these two points are intertwined in Hume and Einstein.