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Quantum MechanicsAn Empiricist View$
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Bas C. van Fraassen

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780198239802

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198239807.001.0001

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EPR: When Is a Correlation not a Mystery? 1

EPR: When Is a Correlation not a Mystery? 1

(p.338) 10 EPR: When Is a Correlation not a Mystery?1
Quantum Mechanics

Bas C. van Fraassen

Oxford University Press

The Einstein–Podolsky–Rosen argument against the completeness of quantum mechanics (‘EPR paradox’) is intimately related to no‐hidden‐variable theorems and to the limited options for interpretation with respect to incompatible observables. The argument is analysed, and its connection to John Bell's derivation of the Bell Inequalities examined. The predictions of statistical correlation are subject to empirical tests; once confirmed, the question of interpretation pertains to the possibility of correlations between spatially separated events in the absence of deterministic ’preprogramming’ or common causes. Topics include Schroedinger's 'spooky action at a distance’ and the supposition that there can be a ’Bell telephone’ to exploit those predicted correlations for instantaneous communication.

Keywords:   John Bell, Bell Inequalities, Bell telephone, common cause model, completeness, Einstein–Podolsky–Rosen argument, EPR paradox, no‐hidden‐variable theorem, Erwin Schroedinger

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