Phenomenon and Physical Reality

  • Wolfgang Pauli


In the following lecture I wish to give some indications as to which problems, connected with the key-words phenomenon and reality, play an important part in contemporary physics, without claiming anything like mastery over this inexhaustible theme. In the course of my remarks I shall also touch on controversial questions, for it is towards them that general interest is chiefly directed. To give the philosophers their bearings, I may say at once that I am not myself an adherent of any particular philosophical trend with a name ending in “-ism”. I am moreover opposed to associating particular “-isms”with particular physical theories, such as for instance the theory of relativity or quantum or wave mechanics, although this is occasionally done by physicists. My general tendency is rather to hold a middle course between extreme directions. In this sense I think it best to consider first of all how phenomenon and reality occur in the physicist’s everyday professional life.


Quantum Mechanic Physical Theory Physical Reality Contemporary Physic Controversial Question 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Theorie und Experiment, Dialectica 6 , 141 (1952); preceding essay.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    In this connection cf. also Dialectica 2, No. 3/4, pp. 305–424 (1948); and the volume on Einstein in the Library of Living Philosophers series (1948).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Written in 1954.Google Scholar
  4. 4a).
    Cf. A. Einstein, Memorial volume to Louis de Broglie, Paris 1951, p. 6;Google Scholar
  5. 4b).
    A. Einstein, The Meaning of Relativity, 4th ed., Princeton, 1953;zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  6. 4c).
    and especially c) his essay in A. Einstein, Scientific Papers presented to Max Born, New York 1953, pp. 33–40.zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  7. *.
    This corrects the misplaced end of quotation of the German edition.Google Scholar
  8. 5.
    See Einstein in his essay in Scientific Papers presented to Max Born, New York 1953, pp. 33–40.Google Scholar
  9. 6.
    Cf. also W. Pauli, Experientia VI/2, 72 (1950). [This volume, essay 2]Google Scholar
  10. *.
    See the corresponding footnote in essay 2, p. 40, this volume.Google Scholar
  11. 7.
    J. M. DuMond and E. R. Cohen, Physical Review 82, 555 (1951) give 137.0429 ± 0.0009,ADSGoogle Scholar
  12. 7a.
    R. Arnowitt, Physical Review 92, 1001 (1953), especially p. 1008: 137.0377* ± 0.0016 (*Last place 4 or 8 according to the correction applied.)ADSGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wolfgang Pauli

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations