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A list of key readings about Reality.
Please sort and annotate in a user-friendly manner. For formatting, consider using automated reference wikification.


  • Dawkins R. (2012) The Magic of Reality: How We Know What's Really True. Illustrated by Dave McKean. Free Press. eBook, 272 pages. ISBN 1451690134. | An engaging discussion of reality from a viewpoint close to that of "model-dependent reality".
    • Excerpt: There is a less familiar way in which a scientist can work out what is real when our five senses cannot detect it directly. This is through the use of a 'model' of what might be going on, which can then be tested. We imagine - you might say we guess - what might be there. That is called the model. We then work out (often by doing a mathematical calculation) what we ought to see, or hear, etc. (often with the help of measuring instruments) if the model were true. We then check whether that is what we actually do see. The model might literally be a replica made out of wood or plastic, or it might be a piece of mathematics on paper, or it might be a simulation in a computer. We look carefully at the model and predict what we ought to see or hear, etc. if the model were correct. Then we look to see whether the predictions are right or wrong. If they are right, this increases our confidence that the model really does represent reality; we then go on to devise further experiments, perhaps refining the model, to test the findings further and confirm them. If our predictions are wrong, we reject the model, or modify it and try again.
  • Loptson P. (2001) Reality: Fundamental Topics in Metaphysics. University of Toronto Press. ISBN 0802048161. | Google Books preview.
This book was originally published in 1988 by John Wiley & Sons. Inc. Copyright returned to the author in 1999 by John Wiley & Sons.
The PDF eBook was created by Dag Forssell in May. 2001.
Bruce Gregory has granted permission to freely distribute this book in pdf-file form for personal use only. Not for commercial use or corporate distribution.

Book chapters