, Volume 22, Issue 2, pp 283–287 | Cite as

How (and how not) to object to objects: developments in structural realism

Elaine M. Landry and Dean P. Rickles (eds): Structural realism: Structure, object and causality. The Western Ontario Series in Philosophy of Science 77, Springer, 2012, xvi+209pp, €106.95 HB
  • Kerry McKenzie
Essay Review

‘Structural Realism: Structure, Object and Causality’ is a collection of new essays on structural realism that grew out of a workshop held at the foot of the Canadian Rockies in the summer of 2007. With 12 essays covering three grand themes within structuralism—namely the formal frameworks most appropriate to structuralism, the structuralist metaphysics of objects and relations, and the incorporation of modality within it—tracing the conceptual links between the contributions can be challenging at times. Nevertheless, this collection provides a valuable cross-sectional view of the contemporary state of the field, and especially so if taken when taken together with Bokulich and Bokulich’s recent (2011) edition on ‘Scientific Structuralism’. In what follows, I shall put the papers on formal frameworks for structuralism to one side and focus upon some of the more metaphysical topics that are dealt with in the course of the volume, and in particular those of identity, intrinsicality,...



Thanks to all at the Leeds philosophy of physics reading group.


  1. Bokulich, Alisa and Peter Bokulich. 2011. Scientific Structuralism. Boston Studies in the Philosophy and History of Science, Vol. 281, Springer.Google Scholar
  2. Chakravartty, A. 2003. The structuralist conception of objects. Philosophy of Science 70: 867–878.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Saatsi, J. 2010. Whence ontological structural realism? In EPSA epistemology and methodology of science: launch of the European philosophy of science association, ed. M. Suárez, M. Dorato, and M. Rédei, 225–265. Dordrecht: Springer.Google Scholar
  4. Wolff, J. 2011. Do objects depend on structures? British Journal for the Philosophy of Science. doi: 10.1093/bjps/axr041.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of LeedsLeedsUK

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