





. 
Quantum field theory combines quantum mechanics with the special
theory of relativity and underlies elementary particle physics. This book
presents a philosophical analysis of quantum field theory. It is the first
treatise in which the philosophies of spacetime, quantum phenomena, and
particle interactions are encompassed in a unified framework. Describing
the physics in nontechnical terms, and schematically illustrating complex
ideas, the book also serves as an introduction to fundamental physical
theories. The philosophical interpretation both upholds the reality of the
quantum world and acknowledges the irreducible cognitive elements in its
representation. The interpretation is based on an analysis of our ways of
thinking as they are embedded in the logical structure of quantum field
theory. The author argues that philosophical categories are significant only
if they play active and essential roles in our knowledge and hence constitute
part of the theories in actual use. Thus she regards physical theories as
primary, extracts their categorical structure, and uses it to rethink key
philosophical questions. Among the questions this book tries to answer are:
What are the quantum properties independent of measurements? How do we
refer to individual things in a continuous field? How do theories relate to
objects? What are the general conditions of the world and our ways of
thinking that make possible our knowledge of the microscopic realm, which
is so intangible and counterintuitive? As a penetrating analysis of vital
themes in contemporary science, the book will engage the interest of students
and professionals in physics and philosophy alike. 







Contents 


 1. Introduction
 § 1. A Human View of the World in Quantum Field Theory
 § 2. The Categorical Framework of Objective Knowledge
 2. Nonrelativistic Quantum Mechanics
 § 3. The Structure of Quantum Mechanics
 § 4. The Quantum Measurement Problem
 3. Relativity and Symmetries
 § 5. Geometry and Spacetime
 § 6. Symmetries in Physics
 § 7. The Principles of Relativity and Local Symmetry
 4. Quantum Field Theory
 § 8. Quantum Fields and Elementary Particles
 § 9. Fields, Quantum Fields, and Field Quanta
 § 10. Interacting Fields and Gauge Field Theory
 5. Objects of Experiences: Quantum Statesobservablesstatistics
 § 11. Properties and Quantum Properties: Amplitudes
 § 12. The Form of Observation and the Reality of Quantum
States
 § 13. The Gap in Understanding: Eigenvalue and Probability
 § 14. Coordinatization of the Quantum World: Observables
 § 15. The General Concept of Objects in Physical Theories
 § 16. The Illusion of the Observer
 § 17. The Mentalism Behind Yesno Experiments
 6. The Eventstructure and the Spatiotemporal Order: Local Fields
 § 18. The Whole and the Individual: Field and Event
 § 19. ThisSomething: Events or Local Fields
 § 20. The Basic Spatiotemporal Structure of the Physical World
 § 21. The Referential Structure of Field Theory
 § 22. The States of the Field as a Whole: Field Quanta
 § 23. Identity and Diversity: Quantum MultiParticle Systems
 7. Explicit Relations and the Causal Order: Interacting Fields
 § 24. The Constancy of Predication and the Cement of the
Universe
 § 25. Permanence, Endurance, and the Concepts of Time
 § 26. How Are Regular Successions of Events Possible?
 § 27. Relational Properties: Phase and Potential
 § 28. Causal Relations: Connection and Parallel Transport
 § 29. Thoroughgoing Interaction: Renormalization
 8. Epilogue
 § 30. The Intelligibility of the Objective World
 Appendix A. measure and probability: quantity, quality, modality
 § A1. Measure: the General Concept of Extensive Magnitudes
 § A2. Function and Distribution: Individual and Collective
Qualities
 § A3. Individual, Statistical, and Probabilistic Statements
 Appendix B. fiber bundles
 Appendix C. the cosmic and the microscopic: an application






