Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo / Portale Web di Ateneo


PHILOSOPHY OF FORMAL AND SYMBOLICAL LANGUAGES
FILOSOFIA DEI LINGUAGGI FORMALI E SIMBOLICI

A.Y. Credits
2023/2024 6
Lecturer Email Office hours for students
Gino Tarozzi Wednesday after the lesson at 5 p.m. and Thursday before the lesson at 3 p.m.
Teaching in foreign languages
Course partially taught in a foreign language English
This course is taught partially in Italian and partially in a foreign language. Study materials can be provided in the foreign language and the final exam can be taken in the foreign language.

Assigned to the Degree Course

Date Time Classroom / Location
Date Time Classroom / Location

Learning Objectives

The course, focused on The principles of quantum mechanics and their representation in theatrical and cinematographic language, aim to introduce students to the understanding of the fundamental principles of microphysics starting from an elementary formal point of view, to then highlight how the radical epistemological produced by their implementation has had a profound cultural influence on artistic expressive forms such as cinema and theatre, underlining the communicative value of their symbolic languages with respect to the clarification of these principles.

Particular attention will be devoted to the representation and transfiguration of the principle of superposition of quantum states, from which the main paradoxes of quantum mechanics originate, in theatrical language, and of Bohr's principle of complementarity in some important examples of scientific cinematography showing self-interference of the single electron.


 

Program

The course focuses on the representation and transfiguration of the principles of quantum mechanics and in particular of superposition and complementarity (which will be briefly introduced at an elementary level, but will be studied in depth in subsequent courses) in theatrical and cinematographic language. We also intend to show how these forms of artistic expression and communication can constitute not only a tool for understanding and conceptual clarification, which makes the concepts of science more accessible, but also an important support for the scientific language itself.

We will analyze the opposing and irreconcilable versions of the meeting held in Copenhagen shortly after the start of the Second World War between Bohr and Heisenberg, the main founding fathers of "orthodox" quantum mechanics, on the question of the two projects, allied and Nazi, of the atomic bomb, in two plays, in which  the inaccessibility of a historical reconstruction of past events is not interpreted as in the Pirandellian theater in terms of mere gnoseological relativism with respect to inaccessible or hidden truths (with the possibility that the discovery of some new source or document can shed light on the real trend of the facts), but assuming that all the described/predicted possibilities are simultaneously real in the same way as established by the principle of superposition of quantum states until the considered event is not observed or measured.

As far as the case of cinematographic language is concerned, two films of self-interference of electrons will be analysed, which allow a visualization of the dual, wave and particle behavior of atomic objects, considered unobservable in the restrictive interpretations of the principle of complementarity, according to which the wave aspect and corpuscular are completely mutually exclusive within the same physical situation.

As part of the course, Dr. Franco Pollini will hold a seminar on Theater and science which will be considered part of the exam programme. The distinctive features of the course will be the great attention to the critical analysis of the concepts and methodologies involved in the processes of rational interaction. The didactic and introductory approach to the various logical and mathematical notions used will make the course self-sufficient.

Bridging Courses

There are no strict pre-requisites for this course.

Learning Achievements (Dublin Descriptors)

Applying knowledge and understanding:

After the course students should be able to discuss and evaluate various claims and arguments both in the specialistic debate and in the general contemporary cultural debate. 

Making judgements:

After the course students should be able to make autonomous and original judgements about the arguments in the debate. To this end discussions in the classroom will be encouraged. Originality and autonomous judgement will be part of the final evalution of the student's performance.

Communication skills:

After the course students should be able to explain and discuss the relevant topics with conceptual and linguistic exactness, and to offer efficacious  and synthetic accounts of the subject matter. To this end, verbal interaction in the classroom and a careful reading and analysis of the relevant texts will be encouraged.

Learning skills:

After the course students should be acquainted with the subject matter and the method of research enough to be able to proceed on their own  in gathering further knowledge from the literature in the field and in contiguous fields. To this end they should also improve their ability to read English texts in the field.After the course students should be able to understand and explain texts by history of logic, discuss some of the classical problems in mechanization of reasoning and philosophy of computing, use the bibliographical tools and repertories available in this field. 

Teaching Material

The teaching material prepared by the lecturer in addition to recommended textbooks (such as for instance slides, lecture notes, exercises, bibliography) and communications from the lecturer specific to the course can be found inside the Moodle platform › blended.uniurb.it

Supporting Activities

Lectures: Lectiones Commandinianae;
 


Teaching, Attendance, Course Books and Assessment

Teaching

Classroom lectures offering general frameworks, analyses of particular topics and exercises, comments to the relevant literature. Before, during and after the lecture questions, comments and discussions by the students are encouraged. Of course personal study at home will be equally important.

Attendance

Students should attend classes regularly and actively, since the very beginning. Because of the analytic and often abstract character of the subject matter, active participation in classroom discussion will be very useful. In order to do that, and in general to follow the lectures successfully, it is strongly advised to do every day the homework suggested as preparation for the following lecture.

Course books

Michel Frayn, Copenaghen, Sironi (2009)

Franco Pollini, Margrethe e la bomba, Carocci, Roma (); ivi in particolare Quanti Margrethe pp. 201-217

Franco Pollini e Gino Tarozzi, Dialoghi sopra le due massime interpretazioni della meccanica quantistica, in corso di pubblicazione

Clelia Sedda e Gino Tarozzi, “To See or not to See the Dual Nature of Quantum Objects? Self-Interference of Electrons in Motion Pictures as a proof of of the Realist Interpretation of the Schrödinger Wave Function” in Proceedings XXX conference SISFA, a cura di Roberto Mantovani, Argalia, Urbino, pp. 231-238 (2012)

Flavia Marcacci, “Illusions, Ghosts and Movies in the History of Scientific Instruments”, in Gino Tarozzi Philosopher of Physics, a cura di Vincenzo Fano, Angeli, Milano (2014); pp. 148-160

Assessment

They will study on their own (individually or with others) according to the directions of this vademecum and if possible with the help which can be given by the teacher during office hours or through e-mail, Skype, etc. 

Disabilità e DSA

Le studentesse e gli studenti che hanno registrato la certificazione di disabilità o la certificazione di DSA presso l'Ufficio Inclusione e diritto allo studio, possono chiedere di utilizzare le mappe concettuali (per parole chiave) durante la prova di esame.

A tal fine, è necessario inviare le mappe, due settimane prima dell’appello di esame, alla o al docente del corso, che ne verificherà la coerenza con le indicazioni delle linee guida di ateneo e potrà chiederne la modifica.

Additional Information for Non-Attending Students

Teaching

They will study on their own (individually or with others) according to the directions of this vademecum and if possible with the help which can be given by the teacher during office hours or through e-mail, Skype, etc. 

Attendance

In order to make up for the impossibility of attending classes, a hard and careful study is required. One should already possess good skills of autonomous learning and some capacity to read and understand logic and philosophical texts, at least at a basic level. Whenever possible, it is advisable to work with other students. 

Course books

Michel Frayn, Copenaghen, Sironi (2009)

Franco Pollini, Margrethe e la bomba, Carocci, Roma (); ivi in particolare Quanti Margrethe pp. 201-217

Franco Pollini e Gino Tarozzi, Dialoghi sopra le due massime interpretazioni della meccanica quantistica, in corso di pubblicazione

Clelia Sedda e Gino Tarozzi, “To See or not to See the Dual Nature of Quantum Objects? Self-Interference of Electrons in Motion Pictures as a proof of of the Realist Interpretation of the Schrödinger Wave Function” in Proceedings XXX conference SISFA, a cura di Roberto Mantovani, Argalia, Urbino, pp. 231-238 (2012)

Flavia Marcacci, “Illusions, Ghosts and Movies in the History of Scientific Instruments”, in Gino Tarozzi Philosopher of Physics, a cura di Vincenzo Fano, Angeli, Milano (2014); pp. 148-160

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