Science & Education

, Volume 21, Issue 10, pp 1419–1435 | Cite as

Mario Bunge’s Scientific Realism

  • Alberto Cordero


This paper presents and comments on Mario Bunge’s scientific realism. After a brief introduction in Sects. 1 and 2 outlines Bunge’s conception of realism. Focusing on the case of quantum mechanics, Sect. 3 explores how his approach plays out for problematic theories. Section 4 comments on Bunge’s project against the background of the current debate on realism in contemporary analytic philosophy.


Quantum Mechanic Successful Theory Empirical Success Copenhagen Interpretation Constructive Empiricism 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Bohr, N. (1958). Essays 19321957 on atomic physics and human knowledge. Reprinted as The Philosophical Writings of Niels Bohr, Vol. II. Woodbridge (1987): Ox Bow Press.Google Scholar
  2. Bunge, M. A. (1955). Strife about complementary. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 6, 1–12.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bunge, M. A. (1967a). The turn of the tide. In M. A. Bunge (Ed.), Quantum theory and reality (pp. 1–6). New York: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bunge, M. A. (1967b). Foundations of physics. Berlin, Heidelberg, New York: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bunge, M. A. (1973). Philosophy of physics. Dordrecht: Reidel.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bunge, M. A. (1974). A treatise on basic philosophy, vol. I: Semantics: Sense and reference. Dordrecht: Reidel.Google Scholar
  7. Bunge, M. A. (1977). A treatise on basic philosophy, vol. III: Ontology: The furniture of the world. Dordrecht: Reidel.Google Scholar
  8. Bunge, M. A. (1985). A treatise on basic philosophy, vol. VII: Epistemology and methodology III: Philosophy of science and technology: Part I (formal and physical sciences). Dordrecht: Reidel.Google Scholar
  9. Bunge, M. A. (1990). Instant autobiography in Weingartner and Dorn. (pp. 677–684).Google Scholar
  10. Bunge, M. A. (1993). Realism and antirealism in social science. Theory and Decision, 35, 207–235.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Bunge, M. A. (1997a). Foundations of biophilosophy (with M. Mahner). Berlin: Springer.Google Scholar
  12. Bunge, M. A. (1997b). Mechanism and explanation. Philosophy of the Social Sciences, 27, 410–465.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Bunge, M. A. (1998). Philosophy of science. Vol I. From problem to theory. New Brunswick: Transaction (Chapters 6, 7 and 8).Google Scholar
  14. Bunge, M. A. (1999). The sociology-philosophy connection. New Brunswick: Transaction.Google Scholar
  15. Bunge, M. A. (2001). In M. Mahner (Ed.), Scientific realism. Selected essays of Mario Bunge. New York: Prometheus Books.Google Scholar
  16. Bunge, M. A. (2003). Emergence and convergence: Qualitative novelty and the unity of knowledge. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.Google Scholar
  17. Bunge, M. A. (2004). Twenty-five centuries of quantum physics. Science & Education, 12, 25–61.Google Scholar
  18. Bunge, M. A. (2006). Chasing reality. University of Toronto Press: Scholarly Publishing Division.Google Scholar
  19. Bunge, M. A. (2010). Matter and mind. Boston studies in the philosophy of science (Vol. 287). Dordrecht: Springer.Google Scholar
  20. Chakravartty, A. (2011). Scientific realism. In The Stanford encyclopedia of philosophy.
  21. Cordero, A. (2001). Realism and underdetermination: Some clues from the practices-up. Philosophy of Science, 68S, 301–312.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Cordero, A. (2003). Understanding quantum physics. Science & Education, 12, 503–511.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Cordero, A. (2011). Scientific realism and the Divide et Impera strategy: The ether saga revisited. Philosophy of Science, 78, 1120–1130.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Cordero, A. (2012). Theory-parts for realists. Forthcoming, volume of selected papers. European Philosophy of Science Association 2011.Google Scholar
  25. Ghirardi, G. C., Rimini, A., & Weber, T. (1986). Unified dynamics for microscopic and macroscopic systems. Physical Review D, 34, 440–491.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Howard, D. (2004). Who invented the ‘Copenhagen Interpretation’? A study in mythology. Philosophy of Science, 71, 669–682.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Jones, R. (1991). Realism about what? Philosophy of Science, 58, 185–202.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kitcher, P. (1993). The advancement of science. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  29. Laudan, L. (1981). A confutation of convergent realism. Philosophy of Science, 48, 19–49.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Leplin, J. (1997). A novel defense of scientific realism. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  31. Mermin, N. D. (1985). Is the moon there when nobody looks? Reality and the quantum theory. Physics Today, 38, 38–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Pais, A. (1979). Einstein and the quantum theory. Reviews of Modern Physics, 51, 863–914.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Psillos, S. (1999). Scientific realism: How science tracks truth. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  34. Shapere, D. (1984). Reason and the search for knowledge. Dordrecht: Reidel.Google Scholar
  35. Weingartner, P., & Dorn, G. J. W. (1990). Studies on Mario Bunge’s treatise. Amsterdam: Rodopi.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CUNY Graduate Center and Queens College CUNYCity University of New YorkNew York CityUSA

Personalised recommendations