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Leibnizian relationalism for general relativistic physics

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Vassallo Antonio, Esfeld Michael,
Project The metaphysics of physics: natural philosophy
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics
Volume (Issue) 55
Page(s) 101 - 107
Title of proceedings Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics


An ontology of Leibnizian relationalism, consisting in distance relations among sparse matter points and their change only, is well recognized as a serious option in the context of classical mechanics. In this paper, we investigate how this ontology fares when it comes to general relativistic physics. Using a Humean strategy, we regard the gravitational field as a means to represent the overall change in the distance relations among point particles in a way that achieves the best combination of being simple and being informative.