© 2012

Probability in Physics

  • Yemima Ben-Menahem
  • Meir Hemmo

Part of the The Frontiers Collection book series (FRONTCOLL)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Yemima Ben-Menahem, Meir Hemmo
    Pages 1-16
  3. David Albert
    Pages 17-40
  4. Sheldon Goldstein
    Pages 59-71
  5. Wayne C. Myrvold
    Pages 73-85
  6. Meir Hemmo, Orly Shenker
    Pages 87-98
  7. Roman Frigg, Charlotte Werndl
    Pages 99-113
  8. Eric Fanchon, Klil Ha-Horesh Neori, Avshalom C. Elitzur
    Pages 135-148
  9. Yemima Ben-Menahem
    Pages 149-165
  10. Jeffrey Bub
    Pages 167-185
  11. Christopher A. Fuchs, Rüdiger Schack
    Pages 233-247
  12. Back Matter
    Pages 313-321

About this book


What is the role and meaning of probability in physical theory, in particular in two of the most successful theories of our age, quantum physics and statistical mechanics? Laws once conceived as universal and deterministic, such as Newton‘s laws of motion, or the second law of thermodynamics, are replaced in these theories by inherently probabilistic laws. This collection of essays by some of the world‘s foremost experts presents an in-depth analysis of the meaning of probability in contemporary physics. Among the questions addressed are: How are probabilities defined? Are they objective or subjective? What is their  explanatory value? What are the differences between quantum and classical probabilities? The result is an informative and thought-provoking book for the scientifically inquisitive. 


Determinism in Physics Laws of Nature Probabilistic Descriptions in Physics Quantum Mechanics and Probability Statistical Mechanics

Editors and affiliations

  • Yemima Ben-Menahem
    • 1
  • Meir Hemmo
    • 2
  1. 1.Dept. PhilosophyHebrew University, JerusalemJerusalemIsrael
  2. 2.Dept. PhilosophyUniversity of HaifaHaifaIsrael

About the editors

Yemima Ben-Menahem is professor of philosophy at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She has written extensively on the philosophy of science and is author of Conventionalism (Cambridge University Press).


Meir Hemmo is associate professor of philosophy at the University of Haifa. He has written extensively on the foundations of quantum mechanics and statistical mechanics and is co-author (with Orly Shenker) of The Road to Maxwell’s Demon (forthcoming in Cambridge University of Press).

Bibliographic information

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From the reviews:

“This collection of 18 essays looks at the long-debated role of probability in physics. … This collection leaves readers appreciating the complexity of the philosophical problem. Physicists and philosophers of science should both find this interesting. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students, researchers/faculty, and professionals.” (E. Kincanon, Choice, Vol. 50 (1), September, 2012)