Material Substance

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Material Substance


a kind of matter which, in contrast to a physical force field, possesses a rest mass.

In the final analysis, substance is composed of elementary particles whose rest mass is not equal to zero. (It is basically made up of electrons, protons, and neutrons.) In classical physics, substance and a force field are represented as having two kinds of absolutely opposed matter; the first of these was said to have a discrete structure and the second to be continuous. In quantum physics, which introduced the idea of the dualistic, corpuscular-wave nature of any micro-object, the two kinds of matter are no longer viewed as opposites. The discovery of the close relation between substance and a force field led to more profound concepts concerning the structure of matter; on this basis the categories of matter and material substance were rigorously separated. For many centuries these categories had been considered identical in philosophy and science; moreover, the philosophical meaning remained for the category of matter, whereas the concept of material substance retained its scientific meaning in physics and chemistry. Under conditions prevailing on earth, material substance is encountered in four states: gas, liquid, solid, and plasma. The proposition has also been stated that material substance also exists in a unique hypersolid state (for example, in neutron stars).


Vavilov, S. I. “Razvitie idei veshchestva.” Sobr. soch., vol. 3. Moscow, 1956. Pages 41-62.
Struktura i formy materii. Moscow, 1967.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
As the television scientist Julius Sumner Miller would have asked, "why is it so?" To answer that question we must first acknowledge that food is far more than a material substance that is ingested and excreted.
But Calvin insists the "whole natural world is infused with God's quickening power" so the problem comes not from material substance but when there is an "unnatural instrumentalization of a material substance" (49).
The book's prose is very accessible and poses a welcome variation to the often too detached academic way of writing which does not always do justice to the material substance of cities.
His perspectives include the structure of material substance in Scotus' metaphysics, substantial natures: neither singular nor universal but common, and individuation by the haecceity.
In the hands of so many lesser painters, palette knives merely serve to plaster paint messily and meaninglessly; whereas in Turner's fingers, such a blunt object was able to suggest the ebb, flow and sparkle of water while adding material substance to the waves.
The same problem faced some physicists who claimed that there is nothing that's solid in the world because everything is composed of atoms and atoms, in turn, are mostly empty space with only very tiny bits of material substance swirling within them at enormous speeds.
While extended material substance (body) was impenetrable palpable, divisible, and mortal extended mental substance was penetrable impalpable, indivisible and immortal.
The way she works human faces out of the material substance of the paint itself, taking her depictions to the point of deformation, often touches on primal and existential themes.
Moreover, in the framework of this mechanistic model, it does not matter what we mean saying "physical vacuum": a material substance, or space itself.
"It is possible to increase the strength base and resistance to erosion up to 3 times and 10 times respectively with respect to the material substance. It is also possible to give properties such as semi conduction or other physical properties to the desired material with regard to its application," he added, explaining about the results of the study.
"We wanted to feature people who are working with their hands and really thinking about the material substance they are working with, whether it's pushing paint around on a canvas or banging wood or sculpting wood."

Full browser ?