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Schwinger-Keldysh effective field theory

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The subject of quantum field theory in mixed states of quantum matter is an old and rich one. The natural setting to discuss field theory in a mixed state is the Schwinger-Keldysh formalism. The subject of this talk is the set of peculiar symmetries that arise in Schwinger-Keldysh theories, and how they may be accounted for in effective field theory. In particular, when the mixed state is thermal, the effective description is constrained by two BRST-like supercharges which, at low energies, generate an algebra akin to minimal supersymmetric quantum mechanics. If time allows, I will also discuss a sort of Schwinger-Keldysh bootstrap for effective actions on more complicated closed-time-contours, which describe the out-of-time-ordered correlation functions that diagnose early-time chaotic growth in quantum systems.