Ontologically significant aggregation: Process structural realism (PSR)

In Michel Weber and Will Desmond (ed.), Handbook of Whiteheadian Process Thought. De Gruyter. pp. 2--179 (2008)
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Combinations of molecules, of biological individuals, or of chemical processes can produce effects that are not simply attributable to the constituents. Such non-redundant causality warrants recognition of those coherences as ontologically significant whenever that efficacy is relevant. With respect to such interaction, the effective coherence is more real than are the components. This ontological view is a variety of structural realism and is also a kind of process philosophy. The designation ‘process structural realism’ (PSR) seems appropriate.

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Joseph E. Earley
Georgetown University


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