# Wave/particle duality in art and the world as a general pattern

## Main Question or Discussion Point

As a professional novelist, I see wave particle duality in all things including arts. For instance a book written in the first person (I) is the particle viewpoint just as the 3rd person represents one bifurcation of the wave function viewpoint. I see wave particle duality everywhere. Take sexual reproduction. The female's sex organ is a particle viewpoint (one egg) as the sperm is the wave function (a mass of sperm). I wonder if scientists and nonscientists have spent time seeing wave particle duality in all things?

## Answers and Replies

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ZapperZ
Staff Emeritus
Have you ever considered the idea that there might NOT be a "wave-particle duality", that it was simply due to our classical perception of things we thought can only be described differently?

See an entry in the FAQ in the General Physics forum to see why, in quantum mechanics, there is no such thing as a "wave-particle duality".

So then, with that knowledge in mind, doesn't it make your original premise (wave-particle duality) as either being moot, or no longer has any connection with physics.

Zz.

apeiron
Gold Member
As a professional novelist, I see wave particle duality in all things including arts. For instance a book written in the first person (I) is the particle viewpoint just as the 3rd person represents one bifurcation of the wave function viewpoint. I see wave particle duality everywhere. Take sexual reproduction. The female's sex organ is a particle viewpoint (one egg) as the sperm is the wave function (a mass of sperm). I wonder if scientists and nonscientists have spent time seeing wave particle duality in all things?
If you are talking about general principles, then you really mean complementarity rather than duality - the breaking of the symmetry of possibility into two alternatives that are asymmetric and thus are different as possible, yet still completing each other.

And this breaking is usually across scale, so one becomes the local (the figure or event) and the other becomes the global (the ground or context). So for example, a particle is the notion of a localised and discrete entity, a field is the notion of a continuous and global context.

Male/female in fact does not fit well into this scheme. The sexes are usually more similar than they are different. Though you can contrast the single ova/many sperm in that the ova is a "context" in carrying across all the maternal cellular machinery, such as mitochondria, while the winning sperm is a "local event", just the DNA arriving. Or instead, the cloud of sperm as the global context, the ova as the local entity. (So you can see why I say that sexual reproduction is not actually a great example.)

However your first person/third person does have a clearer complementary structure. There is the local point of view complemented by the global one, that is the god's eye view of a third person narrator. You could call the distinction internal vs external, subjective vs objective, etc.

If you want to explore this more - from a working scientist's perspective - then Scott Kelso could be your guy. He has modelled complementarity in brain dynamics and now strives to show how it pervades all fields, including QM of course.

http://www.thecomplementarynature.com/