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Park, Seungbae
Division of General Studies
Research Interests
  • Philosophy of Science and Ethics

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Can Mathematical Objects Be Causally Efficacious?

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Title
Can Mathematical Objects Be Causally Efficacious?
Author
Park, Seungbae
Keywords
Mathematical Causalism, Mathematical Object, Mathematical Realism
Issue Date
201711
Publisher
ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS
Citation
INQUIRY-AN INTERDISCIPLINARY JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY, v., no., pp. -
Abstract
Callard (2007) argues that it is metaphysically possible that a mathematical object, although abstract, causally affects the brain. I raise the following objections. First, a successful defence of mathematical realism requires not merely the metaphysical possibility but rather the actuality that a mathematical object affects the brain. Second, mathematical realists need to confront a set of three pertinent issues: why a mathematical object does not affect other concrete objects and other mathematical objects, what counts as a mathematical object, and how we can have knowledge about an unchanging object.
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ISSN
0020-174X
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