Argle victorious: a theory of holes as hole-linings

Synthese 200 (6):1-16 (2022)
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Abstract

In this paper I take up the task, begun by Lewis and Lewis in their seminal paper on the topic, of offering a theory of holes according to which a hole is simply its hole-lining. I begin by motivating the theory, arguing that it holds interest even absent its original animating concerns of nominalism and materialism, and present desiderata any such theory must satisfy. With this in place, I offer a definition both of a lining and of hole sameness, arguing that these can overcome the most prominent standing objections to identifying holes with linings. Finally, I present a more powerful counterargument in the spirit of Casati and Varzi, and conclude with an emended version of the theory meeting all our earlier desiderata. I conclude by dispelling some possible worries about the nominalist and materialist credentials of my theory.

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