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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



in philosophy, the correspondence between a representation, or image, and its original.

The concept of resemblance, which is used in modeling, embraces three basic relationships: the correspondence between a qualitative property of a representation and a particular feature of the original (for example, the color green as perceived in the leaves of a plant corresponds to a given length of the electromagnetic waves emitted by the surface of the leaves); the correspondence between the structural design of a representation and the structural design of the original (for example, the design of a geographic map corresponds to the geometric design of a locality), where distinct types of structural correspondence may be described by different mathematical mappings, such as isomorphism or homomorphism; and the correspondence between the quantitative characteristics of a representation and those of the original (for example, quantitative thermostatic value corresponds to measurable body temperature).

The degree of resemblance, or of congruity, between a representation and its original can be evaluated in terms of the following: reliability of information, of what is known, or, in the case of theoretical constructs, demonstrability; exactness and fullness of representation; and depth or relevance of representation of particular properties, connections, and relations. Dialectical materialism rejects the one-sided interpretation of resemblance as a mirror reflection embodied in physical likeness or as the hieroglyphic representation of an object proposed by the theory of hieroglyphs.


See references under REFLECTION.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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