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Only If Quanta Had Logic

James H. McGrath
PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association
Vol. 1978, Volume One: Contributed Papers (1978), pp. 268-275
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/192643
Page Count: 8
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Only If Quanta Had Logic
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Abstract

Putnam and others have argued that an examination of structures arising in quantum mechanics can lead to a non-classical propositional logic, quantum logic. In this paper it is argued that the procedure by which quantum logic is said to be discovered, a process called reading off, is fundamentally flawed. A parody fable shows that reading off leads to absurd consequences. The fable also leads one to cast doubt on the following claims central to the quantum logic program: (i) logic can be reformed locally; (ii) classical logic is read off classical physics; and (iii) reading off is a justifiable process because quantum logic resolves quantum paradoxes.

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