Review of What Is a Chemical Element? By Eric Scerri and Elena Ghibaudi, eds. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2020.
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Whereas philosophy of physics and philosophy of biology have for long been well-established academic sub-disciplines, philosophy of chemistry in its modern sense is of more recent origin. The field essentially originated in the late 1980s, not least through the pioneering works and organizational efforts of Eric Scerri. Since then philosophy of chemistry has flourished and attracted much attention not only from historians and philosophers of science but also from some practicing chemists. As indicated by its title, the present work edited by Scerri and Elena Ghibaudi focuses on the nature and meaning of a chemical element, obviously a concept at the very heart of the chemical sciences.