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Do powers need powers to make them powerful? From pandispositionalism to Aristotle

In The Metaphysics of Powers: Their Grounding and Their Manifestations. Routledge. pp. 337 - 352 (2010)

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  1. The Metaphysics of Bodily Health and Disease in Plato's Timaeus.Brian D. Prince - 2014 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 22 (5):908-928.
    Near the end of his speech, Timaeus outlines a theory of bodily health and disease which has seemed to many commentators loosely unified or even inconsistent . But this section is better unified than it has appeared, and gives us at least one important insight into the workings of physical causality in the Timaeus. I argue first that the apparent disorder in Timaeus’s theory of disease is likely a deliberate effect planned by the author. Second, the taxonomy of disease in (...)
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  • The Dual Nature of Properties: The Powerful Qualities View Reconsidered.Joaquim Giannotti - 2019 - Dissertation, University of Glasgow
    Metaphysical orthodoxy holds that a privileged minority of properties carve reality at its joints. These are the so-called fundamental properties. This thesis concerns the contemporary philosophical debate about the nature of fundamental properties. In particular, it aims to answer two questions: What is the most adequate conception of fundamental properties? What is the “big picture” world-view that emerges by adopting such a conception? I argue that a satisfactory answer to both questions requires us to embrace a novel conception of powerful (...)
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  • Overpowering: How the Powers Ontology Has Overreached Itself.Alexander Bird - 2016 - Mind 125 (498):341-383.
    Many authors have argued in favour of an ontology of properties as powers, and it has been widely argued that this ontology allows us to address certain philosophical problems in novel and illuminating ways, for example, causation, representation, intentionality, free will and liberty. I argue that the ontology of powers, even if successful as an account of fundamental natural properties, does not provide the insight claimed as regards the aforementioned non-fundamental phenomena. I illustrate this argument by criticizing the powers theory (...)
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  • Two Ways to Particularize a Property.Robert K. Garcia - 2015 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 1 (4):635-652.
    Trope theory is an increasingly prominent contender in contemporary debates about the existence and nature of properties. But it suffers from ambiguity concerning the nature of a trope. Disambiguation reveals two fundamentally different concepts of a trope: modifier tropes and module tropes. These types of tropes are unequally suited for metaphysical work. Modifier tropes have advantages concerning powers, relations, and fundamental determinables, whereas module tropes have advantages concerning perception, causation, character-grounding, and the ontology of substance. Thus, the choice between modifier (...)
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  • Neo-Thomistic Hylomorphism Applied to Mental Causation and Neural Correlates of Consciousness.Matthew Keith Owen - 2018 - Dissertation, University of Birmingham
    The aim of this work is to defend substance dualism by defeating two of its paramount potential defeaters. I will argue that a substance dualist position, neo-Thomistic hylomorphism, provides a solution to the causal pairing problem and a good explanation of neural correlates of consciousness. After an introductory first chapter, I'll explicate dualism's dominant potential defeaters in the next three chapters. Chapter 2 will clarify what neural correlates of consciousness are and the objection to dualism based on neural correlates. The (...)
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  • I—Fundamental Powers, Evolved Powers, and Mental Powers.Alexander Bird - 2018 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 92 (1):247-275.
    Powers have in recent years become a central component of many philosophers’ ontology of properties. While I have argued that powers exist at the fundamental level of properties, many other theorists of powers hold that there are also non-fundamental powers. In this paper I articulate my reasons for being sceptical about the existing reasons for holding that there are non-fundamental powers. However, I also want to promote a different argument for the existence of a certain class of non-fundamental powers: properties (...)
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  • Varieties of Power.Jesse M. Mulder - forthcoming - Axiomathes:1-17.
    Power enthusiasts are engaged in two projects: developing a decent metaphysical account of powers, and applying that account in order to make progress on various other philosophical issues, ranging from narrowly related topics such as causality to further removed ones such as free will, reasoning, or perception. I argue that an intermediate step may be taken, one that explores ‘varieties of power’ while still staying within the realm of, of ‘pure’ powers metaphysics. Taking this intermediate step provides a much more (...)
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  • No Time for Powers.Marius Backmann - 2019 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 62 (9-10):979-1007.
    ABSTRACTIn this paper, I will investigate the compatibility of different metaphysics of time with the powers view. At first sight, it seems natural to combine some sort of powers ontology with a dy...
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  • Why Causal Evidencing of Risk Fails. An Example From Oil Contamination.Elena Rocca & Rani Lill Anjum - 2019 - Ethics, Policy and Environment 22 (2):197-213.
    ABSTRACTMeasurements of environmental toxicity from long-term exposure to oil contamination have delivered inaccurate and contradictory results regarding the potential harms for humans and ecosyste...
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  • Informing Matter and Enmattered Forms: Aristotle and Galen on the ‘Power’ of the Seed.Roberto Lo Presti - 2014 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 22 (5):929-950.
    In this paper, I consider points of intersection between the Aristotelian and the Galenic notions of ‘ power of the seed’ and some of the key issues and key concepts developed within the power -structuralism paradigm and try to understand whether, and to what extent, the conceptual lens provided by the power -structuralism hypothesis may help us to shed fresh light on aspects of both the Aristotelian and the Galenic theory of the seed, which are still unclear or highly controversial, (...)
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  • The Regress of Pure Powers Revisited.Rögnvaldur Ingthorsson - 2015 - European Journal of Philosophy 23 (3):529-541.
    The paper aims to elucidate in better detail than before the dispute about whether or not dispositional monism—the view that all basic properties are pure powers—entails a vicious infinite regress. Particular focus is on Alexander Bird's and George Molnar's attempts to show that the arguments professing to demonstrate a vicious regress are inconclusive because they presuppose what they aim to prove, notably that powers are for their nature dependent on something else. I argue that Bird and Molnar are mistaken. It (...)
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  • Fine-Tuned of Necessity?Ben Page - 2018 - Res Philosophica 95 (4):663-692.
    This paper seeks to explicate and analyze an alternative response to fine-tuning arguments from those that are typically given—namely, design or brute contingency. The response I explore is based on necessity, the necessitarian response. After showing how necessity blocks the argument, I explicate the reply I claim necessitarians can give and suggest how its three requirements can be met: firstly, that laws are metaphysically necessary; secondly, that constants are metaphysically necessary; and thirdly, that the fundamental properties that determine the laws (...)
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  • Can Analytical Sociology Do Without Methodological Individualism?Nathalie Bulle & Denis Phan - 2017 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 47 (6):379-409.
    The explanatory power of structures in analytical sociologists’ agent-based models brings into question methodological individualism. We defend that from an explanatory point of view, the syntactic properties of models require semantic conditions of interpretation drawn from a conceptual research framework; in such a framework, social/relational structures have only partial, explanatory power ; and taking the explanation further through generative mechanism modeling necessitates calling upon methodological individualism’s generic framework of interpretation that relies on social actors’ rational capacity. According to this interpretive (...)
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