The Enhanced Indispensability Argument: Representational versus Explanatory Role of Mathematics in Science

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    • Pages: 143 to 154
    • Support: Electronic document
    • Languages: Anglais
    • Édition: Original
    • DOI: 10.1093/bjps/axq029
    • Creation date: 20-05-2011
    • Last update: 20-05-2011



    The Enhanced Indispensability Argument (Baker [2009]) exemplifies the new wave of the indispensability argument for mathematical Platonism. The new wave capitalizes on mathematics' role in scientific explanations. This paper will criticize some analyses of mathematics' explanatory function. In turn, it will emphasize the representational role of mathematics, and argue that the debate would significantly benefit from acknowledging this alternative viewpoint to mathematics' contribution to scientific explanations and knowledge.