The Reality of Opposites

  • Kalervo V. Laurikainen


Complementarity is a concept introduced by Bohr which seems impossible for many to accept. According to Bohr, description of the atomic world presupposes “complementarity”: manners of description which complement one another. They are mutually exclusive, as in the case of a “particle description” versus a “wave description”. In complementarity some people see the core of the “confusion” in the basic philosophy of atomic theory. In a way it really is the case, because it introduces the idea of contradictory elements in reality. But it is just this revolutionary idea which opens the way to a new perspective on science. Thus, the way the researcher responds to complementarity reveals his ideological attitude.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kalervo V. Laurikainen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of High-Energy PhysicsUniversity of HelsinkiHelsinki 17Finland

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