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Heinrich Hertz : Classical Physicist, Modern Philosopher - Davis Baird

Heinrich Hertz

Classical Physicist, Modern Philosopher

By: Alfred Nordmann, Davis Baird (Editor), R. I. G. Hughes (Editor)

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Published: 31st January 1998
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The sub-title of this symposium is accurate and, in a curious way, promises more than it states: Classical Physicist, Modem Philosopher. Heinrich Hertz, as the con­ summate experimentalist of 19th century technique and as brilliant clarifying critic of physical theory of his time, achieved one of the fulfilments but at the same time opened one of the transition points of classical physics. Thus, in his 'popular' lecture 'On the Relations Between Light and Electricity' at Heidelberg in the Fall of 1889, Hertz identified the ether as henceforth the most fundamental problem of physics, as the conceptual mystery but also the key to understanding mass, electric­ ity, and gravity. Of Hertz's demonstration of electric waves, Helmholtz told the Physical Society of Berlin: "Gentlemen! I have to communicate to you today the most important physical discovery of the century. " Hertz, philosophizing in his direct, lucid, pithy style, once wrote "We have to imagine". Perhaps this is metaphysics on the horizon? In the early pages of his Principles of Mechanics, we read A doubt which makes an impression on our mind cannot be removed by calling it metaphysical: every thoughtful mind as such has needs which scientific men are accustomed to denote as metaphysical. (PM23) And at another place, concerning the terms 'force' and 'electricity' and the alleged mystery of their natures, Hertz wrote: We have an obscure feeling of this and want to have things cleared up.

`... unusually well-balanced anthology ... The editors...are to be congratulated for producing a superb introduction to Hertz scholarship.' ISIS, 91:1 (2000)

Preface
Editorial Note
Heinrich Hertz and the Berlin School of Physicsp. 1
From Helmholtz's Philosophy of Science to Hertz's Picture-Theoryp. 9
The Loss of World in the Image: Origin and Development of the Concept of Image in the Thought of Hermann von Helmholtz and Heinrich Hertzp. 25
Heinrich Hertz's Experiments and Experimental Apparatus: His Discovery of Radio Waves and His Delineation of their Propertiesp. 39
Hertz's Study of Propagation vs. Rutherford's Study of Structure: Two Modes of Experimentation and their Theoretical Underpinningsp. 59
On Hertz's Conceptual Conversion: From Wire Waves to Air Wavesp. 73
Hertz's View on the Methods of Physics: Experiment and Theory Reconciled?p. 89
Hertz and the Geometrization of Mechanicsp. 103
Hertz's Principlesp. 123
"Everything could be different": The Principles of Mechanics and the Limits of Physicsp. 155
The Reception of Heinrich Hertz's Principles of Mechanics by His Contemporariesp. 173
Heinrich Hertz's Mechanics: A Model for Werner Heisenberg's April 1925 Paper on the Anomalous Zeeman Effectp. 183
Heinrich Hertz's Picture-Conception of Theories: Its Elaboration by Hilbert, Weyl, and Ramseyp. 225
Hertz's Philosophy of Nature in Wittgenstein's Tractatusp. 243
Reflections on Hertz and the Hertzian Dipolep. 269
Heinrich Hertz: A Bibliographyp. 281
Concordance and Index of Passagesp. 307
Index of Namesp. 313
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780792346531
ISBN-10: 079234653X
Series: BOSTON STUDIES IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE : Book 198
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 324
Published: 31st January 1998
Publisher: Springer
Country of Publication: NL
Dimensions (cm): 24.77 x 16.51  x 3.18
Weight (kg): 0.66