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Making sense of powerful qualities

Synthese 198 (9):8347-8363 (2020)

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  1. Dispositional realism without dispositional essences.Matthew Tugby - 2022 - Synthese 200 (3):1-27.
    Dispositional realism, as we shall use the term, is a non-reductive, anti-Humean approach to dispositions which says that natural properties confer certain dispositions as a matter of metaphysical necessity. A strong form of dispositional realism is known as pan-dispositionalism, which is typically interpreted as the view that all natural properties are identical with, or essentially dependent on, dispositions. One of the most serious problems facing pan-dispositionalism is the conceivability objection, and the solution commonly offered by essentialists employs the so-called redescription (...)
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  • Grounding Theories of Powers.Matthew Tugby - 2021 - Synthese 198 (12):11187-11216.
    Necessitarianism, as we shall use the term, is the view that natural properties and causal powers are necessarily connected in some way. In recent decades the most popular forms of necessitarianism have been the anti-Humean powers-based theories of properties, such as dispositional essentialism and the identity theory. These versions of necessitarianism have come under fire in recent years and I believe it is time for necessitarians to develop a new approach. In this paper I identify unexplored ways of positing metaphysically (...)
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  • New Foundations of Dispositionalism - Introduction.Andrea Raimondi & Lorenzo Azzano - 2022 - Synthese 200 (5):1-26.
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  • A Brighter Shade of Categoricalism.Michele Paolini Paoletti - forthcoming - Axiomathes:1-30.
    Categoricalism is a doctrine about properties according to which the dispositional aspects of properties are not essential to them. In opposition to categoricalism, dispositionalism holds that the dispositional aspects of properties are essential to them. In this article, I shall construct a new version of categoricalism that should be favoured over the other existing versions: Semi-Necessitarian Categoricalism. In Section 2 I shall elaborate on the distinction between categoricalism and dispositionalism and single out different ‘shades’ of both doctrines. I shall also (...)
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  • Challenging the Identity Theory of Properties.Vassilis Livanios - forthcoming - Synthese 199 (1-2):5079-5105.
    The Identity Theory of properties is an increasingly popular metaphysical view that aims to be a middle way between pure powerism and pure categoricalism. This paper’s goal is to highlight three major difficulties that IDT should address in order to be a plausible account of the nature of properties. First, although IDT needs a clear definition of the notion of qualitativity which is both adequate and compatible with the tenets of the theory, all the extant proposals fail to provide such (...)
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  • Challenging the Identity Theory of Properties.Vassilis Livanios - 2021 - Synthese 199 (1-2):5079-5105.
    The Identity Theory of properties is an increasingly popular metaphysical view that aims to be a middle way between pure powerism and pure categoricalism. This paper’s goal is to highlight three major difficulties that IDT should address in order to be a plausible account of the nature of properties. First, although IDT needs a clear definition of the notion of qualitativity which is both adequate and compatible with the tenets of the theory, all the extant proposals fail to provide such (...)
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  • Pandispositionalism and the metaphysics of powers.Samuel Kimpton-Nye - 2022 - Synthese 200 (5):1-21.
    Some philosophers maintain that physical properties are irreducibly modal: that properties are powers. Powers are then employed to provide explanations of other phenomena of philosophical interest such as laws of nature and modality. There is, however, a dispute among powers theorists about how far the powers ontology extends: are all manner of properties at all levels of fundamentality powers or are powers only to be found among the fundamental properties? This paper argues that the answer to this question depends on (...)
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  • Tropes, Unmanifested Dispositions and Powerful Qualities.Ashley Coates - 2022 - Erkenntnis 87 (5):2143-2160.
    According to a well-known argument, originally due to David Armstrong, powers theory is objectionable, as it leads to a ‘Meinongian’ ontology on which some entities are real but do not actually exist. I argue here that the right conclusion to draw from this argument has thus far not been identified and that doing so has significant implications for powers theory. Specifically, I argue that the key consequence of the argument is that it provides substantial grounds for trope powers theorists, but (...)
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  • Unmanifested Powers and Universals.Ashley Coates - 2022 - Synthese 200 (2):1-22.
    According to a well-known argument against dispositional essentialism, the nature of unmanifested token powers leaves dispositional essentialists with an objectionable commitment to the reality of non-existent entities. The idea is that, because unmanifested token powers are directed at their non-existent token manifestations, they require the reality of those manifestations. Arguably the most promising response to this argument works by claiming that, if properties are universals, dispositional directedness need only entail the reality of actually existing manifestation types. I argue that this (...)
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  • Dispositionality, Categoricity, and Where to Find Them.Lorenzo Azzano - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):2949-2976.
    Discussions about dispositional and categorical properties have become commonplace in metaphysics. Unfortunately, dispositionality and categoricity are disputed notions: usual characterizations are piecemeal and not widely applicable, thus threatening to make agreements and disagreements on the matter merely verbal—and also making it arduous to map a logical space of positions about dispositional and categorical properties in which all parties can comfortably fit. This paper offers a prescription for this important difficulty, or at least an inkling thereof. This will be achieved by (...)
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  • Powers and the hard problem of consciousness: conceivability, possibility and powers.Sophie R. Allen - 2022 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 12 (2):1-33.
    Do conceivability arguments work against physicalism if properties are causal powers? By considering three different ways of understanding causal powers and the modality associated with them, I will argue that most, if not all, physicalist powers theorists should not be concerned about the conceivability argument because its conclusion that physicalism is false does not hold in their favoured ontology. I also defend specific powers theories against some recent objections to this strategy, arguing that the conception of properties as powerful blocks (...)
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  • Properties.Francesco Orilia & Michele Paolini Paoletti - 2020 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    2020 update of the entry "Properties".
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