Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Playing a role : structuralism & the underdetermination of representation
Author: Hodesdon, Kate
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2013
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Hilary Putnam's model-theoretic arguments are closely affiliated with arguments for, and against, structuralism. In this thesis I show that this is no coincidence. Internal realism and structural realism are similarly motivated by worries about intentionality,the way that our language and theories "latch onto" the world. Putnam's model-theoretic arguments challenge a traditional epistemological duality thesis that posits an underlying noumenal world beneath the appearances described by our theories. Internal realism and ontic structural realism both deny that there is such a duality. So, one conclusion I draw is dialectical: that there are strong similarities between internal realism and ontic structural realism in both their motivation and their claims. I also address whether ontic structuralists are right to argue that worries about the way that our theories latch onto the world means that we ought to opt for a structural ontology. Might the problem instead lie with the theories' representation of the facts? I consider this question in relation to mathematical structuralism, and argue for an alternative to the ontic structuralist position about mathematics which responds to the same worries about intentionality in terms of the underdetermination of representation, rather than to the structural nature of the objects being described.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available