Social Scientist. v 5, no. 49 (Aug 1976) p. 74.


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COMMUNICATION

Marxism and Quantum Mechanics

T JAYARAMAN1 levels two substantive criticisms against my article ^Marxism and Quantum Mechanics95:2 firstly, that I have not clearly brought out the revolutionary core of the quantum theory, the core that forms the basis for further theoretical advances in contemporary physics;

secondly, that I do not really show how the Marxist stand, viewpoint and method can be (and has been) applied to the solution of the contradictions that have arisen between the existing quantum theory and the most recent scientific data. "The presentation is characterized by a onesided emphasis on the work of David Bohm. Prematurely, and quite unconvincingly, it elevates the tentative views of Bohm into the Marxist-Leninist standpoint on quantum mechanics."

To these he adds the third criticism that the scientific practice of the socialist countries especially the two largest, the Soviet Union and China, would be highly relevant to the discussion of Marxism and quantum mechanics, and this important experience has been entirely omitted in my analysis. To this last charge I would plead guilty and merely draw the reader's attention to the limited scope of my article stated in the beginning: ^It is the aim of this essay to explain in non-technical language the nature of the basic contradictions of c^uantum theory, to show how they arise from the mechanistic world outlook and to demonstrate how tlic dialectical materialist approach points a way out of the present situation." In view of this limited task I developed, in a summary way, only that much of theory which was necessary for an understanding of these fundamental problems. Jayaraman's reporting of the main trends in the Soviet Union is a valuable contribution to the discussion.

The second criticism is that I have one-sidedly emphasized the work of Bohm. In my article I have also referred to the work ofde Broglie and Vigier who developed the theory of ^double solutions." In fact, I have referred to the tremendous possibilities of developing alternative theories, once we are freed from the illusion created by von Neumann's theorem that there can be no causal explanations of quantum phenomena. 1 described the situation as follows: ^The causal interpretation permits an unlimited number of new physical models according to which the usual



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