Physics

For us the radical changes in physical theory that took physics apart and put it (almost) back together again in the first half of 20th century are well-established facts in the history of science. Let’s be clear on what we have here, though: two of the rare examples of a successful revolution. A revolution, moreover, in a discipline that seemed more secure than just about any other. Some post-modernists like to pretend that the modernists completely missed the revolutionary character of these changes. For the typical post-modernist, changes like these undermine the idea of progress that they take to be at the heart of modernist thought. They are wrong, of course. What radical theory change undermines is the idea of linear progress. Modernists are well aware of that. What modernist call for is not linear progress. What modernists call for is revolution, not just in physics, but everywhere! For if radical change in physics is possible, everything is possible.

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