Making Room for Particulars: Plato’s Receptacle as Space, Not Substratum

Apeiron 49 (3):303-328 (2016)
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The ‘traditional’ interpretation of the Receptacle in Plato’s Timaeus maintains that its parts act as substrata to ordinary particulars such as dogs and tables: particulars are form-matter compounds to which Forms supply properties and the Receptacle supplies a substratum, as well as a space in which these compounds come to be. I argue, against this view, that parts of the Receptacle cannot act as substrata for those particulars. I also argue, making use of contemporary discussions of supersubstantivalism, against a substratum interpretation that separates substratum and space in the Timaeus.

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Christopher Buckels
Junipero Serra High School


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