Einstein’s Local Realism vs. Bohr’s Instrumental Anti-Realism: The Debate Between Two Titans in the Quantum Theory Arena





Einstein; Bohr; Realism; Anti-realism; Quantum Mechanics.


The objective of this article is to demonstrate how the historical debate between materialism and idealism, in the field of Philosophy, extends, in new clothes, to the field of Quantum Physics characterized by realism and anti-realism. For this, we opted for a debate, also historical, between the realism of Albert Einstein, for whom reality exists regardless of the existence of the knowing subject, and Niels Bohr, for whom we do not have access to the ultimate reality of the matter, unless conditioning it to the existence of an observer endowed with rationality, position adopted in the Interpretation of Complementarity (1927) – posture that was expanded in 1935 when Bohr assumed a “relationalist” conception, according to which the quantum state is defined by the relationship between the quantum object and the entire measuring device. This is an extremely important debate, as it further consolidates the results of nascent Quantum Mechanics, guaranteeing Bohr the leadership of the orthodoxy based on the interpretation of complementarity. Here, when dealing with Quantum Theory, we will not make any distinction between the terms Quantum Physics, Quantum Theory or Quantum Mechanics. The entire discussion will be held under the name “Quantum Theory”. Theory that tries to analyze and describe the behavior of physical systems of reduced dimensions, close to the sizes of molecules, atoms and subatomic particles. We hope that the reader will appreciate the genius of these two titans in this field of Physics when they magnificently formulate the arguments that support the object of their defenses.


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Biografia do Autor

Eduardo Simões, Universidade Federal do Tocantins (UFT)

Doutor em Filosofia pela Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR), São Carlos – SP, Brasil. Professor da Universidade Federal do Tocantins (UFT), Palmas – TO, Brasil.


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Como Citar

SIMÕES, E. Einstein’s Local Realism vs. Bohr’s Instrumental Anti-Realism: The Debate Between Two Titans in the Quantum Theory Arena. Griot : Revista de Filosofia, [S. l.], v. 21, n. 2, p. 332–348, 2021. DOI: 10.31977/grirfi.v21i2.2306. Disponível em: https://www3.ufrb.edu.br/seer/index.php/griot/article/view/2306. Acesso em: 28 out. 2021.