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  1. Temporal Scattering.William Bynoe -
    I show that the Eternalist faces a trilemma. Given their theory of time, three claims are each very plausible, yet together form an inconsistent triad. Denying any one of these claims will have significant consequences for how they can conceive of the material realm. I urge that the best strategy is to deny the first claim, and show that this would have a significant consequence: Perdurantism is false.
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  2. Four-Dimensionalism, Eternalism, and Deprivationist Accounts of the Evil of Death.Andrew Brenner - forthcoming - Synthese:1-18.
    Four-dimensionalists think that we persist over time by having different temporal parts at each of the times at which we exist. Eternalists think that all times are equally real. Deprivationists think that death is an evil for the one who dies because it deprives them of something. I argue that four-dimensionalist eternalism, conjoined with a standard deprivationist account of the evil of death, has surprising implications for what we should think about the evil of death. In particular, given these assumptions, (...)
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  3. Persistence as a Four-Dimensionalist: Perdurantism Vs. Exdurantism.Richard Callais - forthcoming - Dialogue.
    The debate over persistence currently involves three competing theories—one three-dimensionalist theory called “endurantism” and two four-dimensionalist theories called “perdurantism” and “exdurantism.” This inner debate between the latter two persistence theories is what I aim to clarify, and ultimately, I argue that perdurantism is superior to exdurantism because exdurantism is too extravagant in counting ordinary objects in the world. Extravagant for the reason that objects in their entirety are bound to their momentary stages, and there is practically an interminable number of (...)
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  4. The Multi-Location Trilemma.Damiano Costa & Claudio Calosi - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-17.
    The possibility of multilocation --- of one entity having more than one exact location --- is required by several metaphysical theories such as the immanentist theory of universals and three-dimensionalism about persistence. One of the most pressing challenges for multi-location theorists is that of making sense of exact location --- in that extant definitions of exact location entail a principle called Functionality, according to which nothing can have more than one exact location. Recently in a number of promising papers, Antony (...)
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  5. Perdurantism, Fecklessness and the Veil of Ignorance.Michael Tze-Sung Longenecker - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (9):2565-2576.
    There has been a growing charge that perdurantism—with its bloated ontology of very person-like objects that coincide persons—implies the repugnant conclusion that we are morally obliged to be feckless. I argue that this charge critically overlooks the epistemic situation—what I call the ‘veil of ignorance’—that perdurantists find themselves in. Though the veil of ignorance still requires an alteration of our commonsense understanding of the demands on action, I argue for two conclusions. The first is that the alteration that is required (...)
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  6. Existence Predicates.Friederike Moltmann - 2020 - Synthese 197 (1):311-335.
    Natural languages generally distinguishes among different existence predicates for different types of entities, such as English 'exist', 'occur', and 'obtain'. The paper gives an in-depth discussion and analysis of a range of existence predicates in natural language within the general project of descriptive metaphysics, or more specifically ‘natural language ontology’.
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  7. Self-Colocation: A Colocation Puzzle for Endurantists.Justin Mooney - 2019 - Synthese (6):5297-5309.
    The recent literature on the nature of persistence features a handful of imaginative cases in which an object seems to colocate with itself. So far, discussion of these cases has focused primarily on how they defy the standard endurantist approaches to the problem of temporary intrinsics. But in this article, I set that issue aside and argue that cases of apparent self-colocation also pose another problem for the endurantist. While the perdurantist seems to have a fairly straightforward account of self-colocation, (...)
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  8. Non-Concrete Parts of Material Objects.Michael Longenecker - 2018 - Synthese 195 (11):5091-5111.
    This article offers a novel solution to the problem of material constitution: by including non-concrete objects among the parts of material objects, we can avoid having a statue and its constituent piece of clay composed of all the same proper parts. Non-concrete objects—objects that aren’t concrete, but possibly are—have been used in defense of the claim that everything necessarily exists. But the account offered shows that non-concreta are independently useful in other domains as well. The resulting view falls under a (...)
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  9. The Limit Decision Problem and Four-Dimensionalism.Costa Damiano - 2017 - Vivarium 55 (1-3):199-216.
    I argue that medieval solutions to the limit decision problem imply four-dimensionalism, i.e. the view according to which substances that persist through time are extended through time as well as through space, and have different temporal parts at different times.
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  10. Trouble Up at T’Ontological Mill: An Inconclusive Dialog.Peter Simons - 2017 - Cosmos + Taxis 4 (4):64-66.
    Grenon and Smith (2004) propose a framework for the ontology of things in space and time involving and invoking the distinction between continuants and occurrents, which has become a key element of Basic Formal Ontology (BFO). The terminology of SNAP (from “snapshot:” state of a continuant at a time) and SPAN (how an occurrent develops over an interval or timespan) occurs in that paper’s title. While any commonsense ontology will have a place for both continuants and occurrents, there is much (...)
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  11. Are The Statue and The Clay Mutual Parts?Lee Walters - 2017 - Noûs:23-50.
    Are a material object, such as a statue, and its constituting matter, the clay, parts of one another? One wouldn't have thought so, and yet a number of philosophers have argued that they are. I review the arguments for this surprising claim showing how they all fail. I then consider two arguments against the view concluding that there are both pre-theoretical and theoretical considerations for denying that the statue and the clay are mutual parts.
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  12. In Defence of Transcendentism.Damiano Costa & Alessandro Giordani - 2016 - Acta Analytica 31 (2):225-234.
    How do objects persist through time? According to endurantism, objects persist through time and do not have temporal parts. According to the transcendentist version of endurantism, objects exist at times by participating in events that occur at those times. This version of transcendentism offers specific metaphysical and semantical advantages over other versions of endurantism. In this paper, we defend transcendentist endurantism against a series of criticisms that have been recently offered by Kristie Miller.
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  13. Relativity and Three Four‐Dimensionalisms.Cody Gilmore, Damiano Costa & Claudio Calosi - 2016 - Philosophy Compass 11 (2):102-120.
    Relativity theory is often said to support something called ‘the four-dimensional view of reality’. But there are at least three different views that sometimes go by this name. One is ‘spacetime unitism’, according to which there is a spacetime manifold, and if there are such things as points of space or instants of time, these are just spacetime regions of different sorts: thus space and time are not separate manifolds. A second is the B-theory of time, according to which the (...)
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  14. 3D Cohabitation.Simon Langford - 2016 - Erkenntnis 81 (6):1195-1210.
    The cohabitation theory is a popular solution to the problem of personal fission. It affirms that all the people who result from fission were there cohabiting the pre-fission body all along. Adopting this solution is an uncontroversial move for four-dimensionalists, but is it open to three-dimensionalists too? Some have thought so, but Katherine Hawley, Mark Johnston, and Eric Olson have argued to the contrary. They claim three-dimensionalists simply cannot be cohabitation theorists. In this paper, I explain how they can.
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  15. Alethic Modalities, Temporal Modalities, and Representation.Jiri Benovsky - 2015 - Kriterion - Journal of Philosophy 29 (1):19-36.
    In this article, I am interested in four versions of what is often referred to as "the Humphrey objection". This objection was initially raised by Kripke against Lewis's modal counterpart theory, so this is where I will start the discussion. As we will see, there is a perfectly good answer to the objection. I will then examine other places where a similar objection can be raised: it can arise in the case of temporal counterpart theory (in fact, it can arise (...)
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  16. Plain Paritculars.Ernâni Magalhães - 2015 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 92 (1):87-108.
    Are concrete objects in some sense made up of the properties they exemplify? A distinguished tradition holds they are. I begin by defending the distinction: there is a real and not just semantic distinction between asserting and denying that concrete objects have their properties as parts. I then argue in favor of the view that concrete objects are not made up of their parts. First, this view has less ontological baggage than its opponent. Next, the supposed advantages of the alternative (...)
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  17. I—What is a Continuant?Helen Steward - 2015 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 89 (1):109-123.
    In this paper, I explore the question what a continuant is, in the context of a very interesting suggestion recently made by Rowland Stout, as part of his attempt to develop a coherent ontology of processes. Stout claims that a continuant is best thought of as something that primarily has its properties at times, rather than atemporally—and that on this construal, processes should count as continuants. While accepting that Stout is onto something here, I reject his suggestion that we should (...)
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  18. Le Labyrinthe temporel. Simplicité, persistance et création continuée chez Leibniz.Jean-Pascal Anfray - 2014 - Archives de Philosophie 77 (1):43-62.
    How to reconcile monadic simplicity with the successive plurality of the monadic states ? The doctrine of continued creation seems to entail the existence of independent temporal parts and thus lead to the thesis that the world contains only transitory things. I try to show how Leibniz has the resources to get out of this quandary. The analysis of the concept of extension shows that a plurality of states does not constitute a divisible aggregate. Then I examine the Leibnizian interpretation (...)
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  19. L'identità diacronica fra ontologia e metafisica.Francesco Franda - 2014 - Rivista Italiana di Filosofia Analitica Junior 2 (5):66-81.
    In this paper, I tackle the problem of diachronic identity. Far from providing a criterion for identity over time, the aim of this work is to understand if this issue pertains to ontology, conceived as that part of philosophy that tries to answer the question about what entities exist, or metaphysics, conceived as that part of philosophy that tries to explain, of those entities, what they are. On the face of it, only metaphysics has the task to solve this problem, (...)
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  20. Building Enduring Objects Out of Spacetime.Cody Gilmore - 2014 - In Claudio Calosi & Pierluigi Graziani (eds.), Mereology and the Sciences: Parts and Wholes in the Contemporary Scientific Context. Springer. pp. 5-34.
    Endurantism, the view that material objects are wholly present at each moment of their careers, is under threat from supersubstantivalism, the view that material objects are identical to spacetime regions. I discuss three compromise positions. They are alike in that they all take material objects to be composed of spacetime points or regions without being identical to any such point or region. They differ in whether they permit multilocation and in whether they generate cases of mereologically coincident entities.
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  21. Neo-Aristotelian Plenitude.Ross Inman - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 168 (3):583-597.
    Plenitude, roughly, the thesis that for any non-empty region of spacetime there is a material object that is exactly located at that region, is often thought to be part and parcel of the standard Lewisian package in the metaphysics of persistence. While the wedding of plentitude and Lewisian four-dimensionalism is a natural one indeed, there are a hand-full of dissenters who argue against the notion that Lewisian four-dimensionalism has exclusive rights to plentitude. These ‘promiscuous’ three-dimensionalists argue that a temporalized version (...)
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  22. Mereological Sums and Singular Terms.Kathrin Koslicki - 2014 - In Shieva Kleinschmidt (ed.), Mereology and Location. Oxford University Press. pp. 209-235.
    The relative merits of standard mereology have received quite a bit of attention in recent years from metaphysicians concerned with the part/whole properties of material objects. A question that has not been pursued to the same degree, however, is what sort of semantic repercussions a commitment to mereological sums in the standard sense might have in particular on the predicted behavior of singular terms and our practices of using such terms to refer to objects. The apparent mismatch between our actual (...)
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  23. On What We Are and How We Persist.Simon Langford - 2014 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 95 (3):356-371.
    This article defends novel approaches to what we are and how we persist. First it is claimed that we have disjunctive persistence conditions: we can persist by way of either biological continuity or psychological continuity. Then it is claimed that we are neither human beings nor persons essentially. Rather, we are essentially bio-psycho-continuers, a concept to be explained along the way. A variety of objections are considered and found wanting.
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  24. Compositional Pluralism and Composition as Identity.Kris McDaniel - 2014 - In Donald Baxter & Aaron Cotnoir (eds.), Composition as Identity. Oxford University Press.
    Let’s start with compositional pluralism. Elsewhere I’ve defended compositional pluralism, which we can provisionally understand as the doctrine that there is more than one basic parthood relation. (You might wonder what I mean by “basic”. We’ll discuss this in a bit.) On the metaphysics I currently favor, there are regions of spacetime and material objects, each of which enjoy bear a distinct parthood relation to members of their own kind. Perhaps there are other kinds of objects that enjoy a kind (...)
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  25. Four-Dimensionalism, Evil, and Christian Belief.Ryan Mullins - 2014 - Philosophia Christi 16 (1):117-137.
    Four-dimensionalism and eternalism are theories on time, change, and persistence. Christian philosophers and theologians have adopted four-dimensional eternalism for various reasons. In this paper I shall attempt to argue that four-dimensional eternalism conflicts with Christian thought. Section I will lay out two varieties of four-dimensionalism—perdurantism and stage theory—along with the typically associated ontologies of time of eternalism and growing block. I shall contrast this with presentism and endurantism. Section II will look at some of the purported theological benefits of adopting (...)
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  26. From Times to Worlds and Back Again: A Transcendentist Theory of Persistence.Alessandro Giordani & Damiano Costa - 2013 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (1):210-220.
    Until recently, an almost perfect parallelism seemed to hold between theories of identity through time and across possible worlds,as every account in the temporal case(endurantism,perdurantism, exdurantism) was mirrored by a twin account in the modal case (trans-world identity, identity-via-parts, identity-via-counterparts). Nevertheless, in the recent literature, this parallelism has been broken because of the implementation in the debate of the relation of location. In particular, endurantism has been subject to a more in-depth analysis, and different versions of it, corresponding to different (...)
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  27. The Semantics of Existence.Friederike Moltmann - 2013 - Linguistics and Philosophy 36 (1):31-63.
    The notion of existence is a very puzzling one philosophically. Often philosophers have appealed to linguistic properties of sentences stating existence. However, the appeal to linguistic intuitions has generally not been systematic and without serious regard of relevant issues in linguistic semantics. This paper has two aims. On the one hand, it will look at statements of existence from a systematic linguistic point of view, in order to try to clarify what the actual semantics of such statements in fact is. (...)
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  28. Classifying Processes: An Essay in Applied Ontology.Barry Smith - 2012 - Ratio 25 (4):463-488.
    We begin by describing recent developments in the burgeoning discipline of applied ontology, focusing especially on the ways ontologies are providing a means for the consistent representation of scientific data. We then introduce Basic Formal Ontology (BFO), a top-level ontology that is serving as domain-neutral framework for the development of lower level ontologies in many specialist disciplines, above all in biology and medicine. BFO is a bicategorial ontology, embracing both three-dimensionalist (continuant) and four-dimensionalist (occurrent) perspectives within a single framework. We (...)
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  29. Familiar Objects and Their Shadows. By Crawford L. Elder. (Cambridge UP, 2011. Pp. Xi + 210. Price £50.00, $85.00 H/B.).Nathan Wildman - 2012 - Philosophical Quarterly 62 (246):195-197.
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  30. How to Endure.J. David Velleman & Thomas Hofweber - 2011 - Philosophical Quarterly 61 (242):37 - 57.
    The terms `endurance' and `perdurance' are commonly thought to denote distinct ways for an object to persist, but it is surprisingly hard to say what these are. The common approach, defining them in terms of temporal parts, is mistaken, because it does not lead to two coherent philosophical alternatives: endurance so understood becomes conceptually incoherent, while perdurance becomes not just true but a conceptual truth. Instead, we propose a different way to articulate the distinction, in terms of identity rather than (...)
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  31. Location and Perdurance.Antony Eagle - 2010 - In Dean Zimmerman (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaphysics: Volume 5. Oxford Univerity Press. pp. 53-94.
    Recently, Cody Gilmore has deployed an ingenious case involving backwards time travel to highlight an apparent conflict between the theory that objects persist by perduring, and the thesis that wholly coincident objects are impossible. However, careful attention to the concepts of location and parthood that Gilmore’s cases involve shows that the perdurantist faces no genuine objection from these cases, and that the perdurantist has a number of plausible and dialectically appropriate ways to avoid the supposed conflict.
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  32. Why Four-Dimensionalism Explains Coincidence.Maya Eddon - 2010 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (4):721-728.
    In "Does Four-Dimensionalism Explain Coincidence" Mark Moyer argues that there is no reason to prefer the four-dimensionalist (or perdurantist) explanation of coincidence to the three-dimensionalist (or endurantist) explanation. I argue that Moyer's formulations of perdurantism and endurantism lead him to overlook the perdurantist's advantage. A more satisfactory formulation of these views reveals a puzzle of coincidence that Moyer does not consider, and the perdurantist's treatment of this puzzle is clearly preferable.
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  33. Coinciding Objects and Duration Properties: Reply to Eagle.Cody Gilmore - 2010 - In Dean Zimmerman (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaphysics: Volume 5. Oxford University Press. pp. 95-111.
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  34. Persistence of Simple Substances.Markku Keinänen & Jani Hakkarainen - 2010 - Metaphysica 11 (2):119-135.
    In this paper, we argue for a novel three-dimensionalist solution to the problem of persistence, i.e. cross-temporal identity. We restrict the discussion of persistence to simple substances, which do not have other substances as their parts. The account of simple substances employed in the paper is a trope-nominalist strong nuclear theory, which develops Peter Simons' trope nominalism. Regarding the distinction between three dimensionalism and four dimensionalism, we follow Michael Della Rocca's formulation, in which 3D explains persistence in virtue of same (...)
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  35. Identifying the Problem of Personal Identity.Ned Markosian - 2010 - In Joseph Keim Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & Harry Silverstein (eds.), Time and Identity. MIT Press. pp. 129.
    This paper has two main aims. The first is to propose a new way of characterizing the problem of personal identity. The second is to show that the metaphysical picture that underlies my proposal has important implications for the 3D/4D debate. I start by spelling out several of the old ways of characterizing the problem of personal identity and saying what I think is wrong with each of them. Next I present and motivate some metaphysical principles concerning property instantiations that (...)
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  36. It Simply Does Not Add Up: Trouble with Overall Similarity.Michael Morreau - 2010 - Journal of Philosophy 107 (9):469-490.
    Comparative overall similarity lies at the basis of a lot of recent metaphysics and epistemology. It is a poor foundation. Overall similarity is supposed to be an aggregate of similarities and differences in various respects. But there is no good way of combining them all.
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  37. Persistence and Responsibility.Neal A. Tognazzini - 2010 - In Joseph Keim Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & Harry Silverstein (eds.), Time and Identity. MIT Press.
    In this paper I argue that adopting a perdurance view of persistence through time does not lead to skepticism about moral responsibility, despite what many theorists have thought.
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  38. Tense, Timely Action and Self-Ascription.Stephan Torre - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 80 (1):112-132.
    I consider whether the self-ascription theory can succeed in providing a tenseless (B-theoretic) account of tensed belief and timely action. I evaluate an argument given by William Lane Craig for the conclusion that the self-ascription account of tensed belief entails a tensed theory (A-theory) of time. I claim that how one formulates the selfascription account of tensed belief depends upon whether one takes the subject of selfascription to be a momentary person-stage or an enduring person. I provide two different formulations (...)
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  39. On (Not) Being in Two Places at the Same Time: An Argument Against Endurantism.Jiri Benovsky - 2009 - American Philosophical Quarterly 46 (3):239 - 248.
    Is there an entity such that it can be in two places at the same time ? According to one traditional view, properties can, since they are immanent universals. But what about objects such as a person or a table ? Common sense seems to say that, unlike properties, objects are not multiply locatable. In this paper, I will argue first of all that endurantism entails a consequence that is quite bizarre, namely, that objects are universals, while properties are particulars. (...)
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  40. Why Parthood Might Be a Four Place Relation, and How It Behaves If It Is.Cody Gilmore - 2009 - In Ludger Honnefelder, Benedikt Schick & Edmund Runggaldier (eds.), Unity and Time in Metaphysics. de Gruyter. pp. 83--133.
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  41. Objects in Time: Studies of Persistence in B-Time.Tobias Hansson Wahlberg - 2009 - Dissertation, Lund University
    This thesis is about the conceptualization of persistence of physical, middle-sized objects within the theoretical framework of the revisionary ‘B-theory’ of time. According to the B-theory, time does not flow, but is an extended and inherently directed fourth dimension along which the history of the universe is ‘laid out’ once and for all. It is a widespread view among philosophers that if we accept the B-theory, the commonsensical ‘endurance theory’ of persistence will have to be rejected. The endurance theory says (...)
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  42. Ought a Four-Dimensionalist To Believe in Temporal Parts?Kristie Miller - 2009 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 39 (4):619-646.
    This paper presents the strongest version of a non-perdurantist four-dimensionalism: a theory according to which persisting objects are four-dimensionally extended in space-time, but not in virtue of having maximal temporal parts. The aims of considering such a view are twofold. First, to evaluate whether such an account could provide a plausible middle ground between the two main competitor accounts of persistence: three-dimensionalism and perdurantist four-dimensionalism. Second, to see what light such a theory sheds on the debate between these two competitor (...)
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  43. Psychological Continuity, Fission, and the Non-Branching Constraint.By Robert Francescotti - 2008 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 89 (1):21–31.
    Those who endorse the Psychological Continuity Approach (PCA) to analyzing personal identity need to impose a non-branching constraint to get the intuitively correct result that in the case of fission, one person becomes two. With the help of Brueckner's (2005) discussion, it is shown here that the sort of non-branching clause that allows proponents of PCA to provide sufficient conditions for being the same person actually runs contrary to the very spirit of their theory. The problem is first presented in (...)
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  44. Persistence and Ontological Pluralism.Pierre Grenon & Barry Smith - 2008 - In Christian Kanzian (ed.), Persistence. Ontos. pp. 33-48.
    We aim to provide the ontological grounds for an adequate account of persistence. We defend a perspectivalist, or moderate pluralist, position, according to which some aspects of reality can be accounted for in ontological terms only via partial and mutually complementary ontologies, each one of which captures some relevant aspect of reality. Our thesis here is that this is precisely the sort of ontological account that is needed for the understanding of persistence, specifically an account involving two independent ontologies, one (...)
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  45. Restricted Composition.Ned Markosian - 2008 - In Theodore Sider, John Hawthorne & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), Contemporary Debates in Metaphysics. Blackwell. pp. 341--63.
    Let’s begin with a simple example. Consider two quarks: one near the tip of your nose, the other near the center of Alpha Centauri. Here is a question about these two subatomic particles: Is there an object that has these two quarks as its parts and that has no other parts? According to one view of the matter (a view that is surprisingly endorsed by a great many contemporary philosophers), the answer to this question is Yes. But I think it (...)
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  46. Reply to Stone on Counterpart Theory and Four-Dimensionalism.Antony Eagle - 2007 - Analysis 67 (2):159 - 162.
    Recently, Jim Stone has argued that counterpart theory is incompatible with the existence of temporal parts. I demonstrate that there is no such incompatibility.
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  47. There is No Simpliciter Simpliciter.Kristie Miller & David Braddon-Mitchell - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 136 (2):249-278.
    This paper identifies problems with indexicalism and abverbialism about temporary intrinsic properties, and solves them by disentangling two senses in which a particular may possess a property simpliciter. The first sense is the one identified by adverbialists in which a particular possesses at all times the property as a matter of foundational metaphysical fact regardless of whether it is manifest. The second involves building on adverbialism to produce a semantics for property-manifestation according to which different members of a family of (...)
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  48. Persons Are Not Made of Temporal Parts.J. Stone - 2007 - Analysis 67 (1):7-11.
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  49. La natura e l'identità degli oggetti materiali.Achille C. Varzi - 2007 - In Annalisa Coliva (ed.), Filosofia analitica. Temi e problemi. Carocci Editore. pp. 17–56.
    A critical survey of the main metaphysical theories concerning the nature of material objects (substratum theories, bundle theories, substance theories, stuff theories) and their identity conditions, both synchronic (monist vs. pluralist theories) and diachronic (three-dimensionalism, four-dimensionalism, sequentialism).
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  50. Promiscuous Endurantism and Diachronic Vagueness.Achille C. Varzi - 2007 - American Philosophical Quarterly 44 (2):181-189.
    According to a popular line of reasoning, diachronic vagueness creates a problem for the endurantist conception of persistence. Some authors have replied that this line of reasoning is inconclusive, since the endurantist can subscribe to a principle of Diachronic Unrestricted Composition (DUC) that is perfectly parallel to the principle required by the perdurantist’s semantic account. I object that the endurantist should better avoid DUC. And I argue that even DUC, if accepted, would fail to provide the endurantist with the necessary (...)
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