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The Indispensability of Mathematics$
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Mark Colyvan

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780195137545

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/019513754X.001.0001

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Mathematics and Its Applications

Mathematics and Its Applications

(p.1) 1 Mathematics and Its Applications
The Indispensability of Mathematics

Mark Colyvan

Oxford University Press

Indispensability arguments are introduced and their connection to scientific realism is discussed. The Quine–Putnam indispensability argument for mathematical realism is then outlined. In particular, the argument's dependence on the doctrines of naturalism and holism is established.

Keywords:   holism, indispensability argument, mathematical realism, naturalism, Putnam, Quine, realism

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