The relativity of inertia and reality of nothing

Citation data:

Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics, ISSN: 1355-2198, Vol: 41, Issue: 1, Page: 9-26

Publication Year:
2010
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Repository URL:
http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/9922
DOI:
10.1016/j.shpsb.2009.08.003
Author(s):
Afriat, Alexander, Caccese, Ermenegildo
Publisher(s):
Elsevier BV, Elsevier
Tags:
Arts and Humanities, Physics and Astronomy
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article description
We first see that the inertia of Newtonian mechanics is absolute and troublesome. General relativity can be viewed as Einstein's attempt to remedy, by making inertia relative, to matter—perhaps imperfectly though, as at least a couple of freedom degrees separate inertia from matter in his theory. We consider ways the relationist (for whom it is of course unwelcome) can try to overcome such underdetermination, dismissing it as physically meaningless, especially by insisting on the right transformation properties.

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