The Structure of Essentialist Explanations of Necessity

Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Fine, Lowe and Hale accept the view that necessity is to be explained by essences: Necessarily p iff, and because, there is some x whose essence ensures that p. Hale, however, believes that this strategy is not universally applicable; he argues that the necessity of essentialist truths cannot itself be explained by once again appealing to essentialist truths. As a consequence, Hale holds that there are basic necessities that cannot be explained. Thus, Hale style essentialism falls short of what Wilsch calls the explanation-challenge (EC) for the metaphysics of necessity. Without endorsing the EC, I argue that Hale’s argument for basic, unexplained necessities fails due to a misunderstanding of the structure of essentialist explanations. Getting clear about the structure of essentialist explanations of necessity leads to a re-evaluation of crucial circularity- and regress-arguments that have been discussed in the debate about essentialism.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Upload history
Archival date: 2019-12-03
View other versions
Added to PP index

Total views
176 ( #37,732 of 69,033 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
31 ( #26,909 of 69,033 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.