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  1. Conceptual reductions, truthmaker reductive explanations, and ontological reductions.Savvas Ioannou - 2022 - Synthese 200 (4):1-26.
    According to conceptual reductive accounts, if properties of one domain can be conceptually reduced to properties of another domain, then the former properties are ontologically reduced to the latter properties. I will argue that conceptual reductive accounts face problems: either they do not recognise that many higher-level properties are correlated with multiple physical properties, or they do not clarify how we can discover new truthmakers of sentences about a higher-level property. Still, there is another way to motivate ontological reduction, the (...)
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  • Can a relational substance ontology be hylomorphic?Travis Dumsday - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 11):2717-2734.
    The debate between relational versus constituent substance ontology is longstanding and ongoing. In the contemporary literature it is mostly taken for granted that any version of hylomorphism must count as a constituent substance ontology. Here I argue that a certain sort of relational substance ontology could also legitimately be labeled hylomorphic, and in fact that relational substance ontologists have some good reasons to affirm this version of hylomorphism.
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  • Dispositional Essentialism and the Nature of Powerful Properties.William A. Bauer - 2013 - Disputatio 5 (35):1-19.
    Dispositional essentialism maintains that all sparse properties are essentially powerful. Two conceptions of sparse properties appear compatible with dispositional essentialism: sparse properties as pure powers or as powerful qualities. This paper compares the two views, criticizes the powerful qualities view, and then develops a new theory of pure powers, termed Point Theory. This theory neutralizes the main advantage powerful qualities appear to possess over pure powers—explaining the existence of powers during latency periods. The paper discusses the relation between powers and (...)
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  • Stage universalism, voints and sorts.Marta Campdelacreu - 2010 - Disputatio 3 (28):293-307.
    In the current debate on how ordinary objects persist through time, more than one philosopher has endorsed the following two theses: stage theory and diachronic universalism. In this paper, I would like to offer a solution to the problem that Balashov poses to the joint acceptance of these theses. I will also offer a number of reasons why, even if it is not necessary to undermine Balashov’s counterexamples, stage theorists can, without making their theory less appealing, reject Balashov’s understanding of (...)
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  • The impossibility of temporal relations between non-identical times: new arguments for presentism.Jeffrey Grupp - 2005 - Disputatio 1 (18):1-35.
    I argue that relations between non-identical times, such as the relations, earlier than, later than, or 10 seconds apart, involve contradiction, and only co-temporal relations are non-contradictory, which would leave presentism the only non-contradictory theory of time. The arguments I present are arguments that I have not seen in the literature.
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  • The unreality of words.Roy W. Perrett - 2023 - Synthese 201 (1):1-18.
    Philosophers of language and linguists need to be wary of generalizing from too small a sample of natural languages. They also need to be wary of neglecting possible insights from philosophical traditions that have focused on natural languages other than the most familiar Western ones. Take, for example, classical Indian philosophy, where philosophical concerns with language were very much involved with the early development of Sanskrit linguistics. Indian philosophers and linguists frequently discussed more general issues about semantics, often in ways (...)
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  • A Problem for Immanent Universals in States of Affairs.Michael J. Raven - 2022 - American Philosophical Quarterly 59 (1):1-9.
    This paper raises a problem for the pair of views that universals are immanent in their instantiations and that these instantiations, or states of affairs, are somehow constructed from the instantiated universals. It is argued that the pair is inconsistent. The first view implies that universals are prior to states of affairs, whereas the second view implies that states of affairs are prior to universals. This paper does not attempt to solve this problem, but rather to formulate it precisely. That (...)
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  • Nominalist Realism.Nicholas K. Jones - 2018 - Noûs 52 (4):808-835.
    This paper explores the impact of quantification into predicate position on the metaphysics of properties, arguing that two familiar debates about properties are fundamentally altered by recasting them in a second-order setting. Two theories of properties are outlined, differing over whether the existence of properties is expressed using first-order or second-order quantifiers. It is argued that the second-order theory: provides good reason to regard debate about the locations of properties as contentless; resolves debate about whether properties are particulars or universals (...)
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  • C.D. Broad on Things and Processes.A. R. J. Fisher - 2022 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 39 (4):385-406.
    In Examination of McTaggart's Philosophy, C.D. Broad advanced a distinctive ontology of things and processes. He argues that neither things nor processes are reduced to each other but instead are reduced to some further kind of entity: “absolute process.” This paper will present Broad's theory of absolute processes and argue that they are best understood as tropes by developing a version of Donald C. Williams's trope ontology. This process ontology of tropes is then defended against objections in the contemporary metaphysics (...)
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  • Cleaning up, and Moving Past, Simple Swamping.Timothy Perrine - 2021 - Theoria 87 (6):1548-1561.
    Many philosophers believe that true belief is of epistemic value, but that knowledge is of even more epistemic value. Some claim that this surplus value is instrumentally valuable to the value of true belief. I call the conjunction of these claims the Instrumentalist’s Conjunction. The so-called “Swamping Problem” is meant to show that Instrumentalist’s Conjunction is inconsistent. Crudely put, the problem is that if knowledge only has surplus value to the value of true belief, and a belief is true because (...)
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  • Tropes and Qualitative Change.Paul Audi - forthcoming - Noûs.
    This paper presents the view that tropes can change, and so are not individuated by their determinate qualitative characters. On the view I have in mind, a trope is at any given time fully determinate, but can change qualitatively within the bounds set by a determinable essence. A charge trope, for example, must at any time have some exact intensity, but can survive changes in intensity. My argument, roughly, is this: Objects can change, and tropes are the parts of objects (...)
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  • Formal Issues of Trope-Only Theories of Universals.Francesco Maria Ferrari - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-28.
    The paper discusses some formal difficulties concerning the theory of universals of Trope-Only ontologies, from which the formal theory of predication advanced by Trope-Only theorists seems to be irremediably affected. It is impossible to lay out a successful defense of a Trope-Only theory without Russellian types, but such types are ontologically inconsistent with tropes’ nominalism. Historically, Tropists’ first way to avoid the problem is appealing to the supervenience claim, which however fails on its terms and, thus, fails as a ground (...)
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  • Immanence in Abundance.Chad Carmichael - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-19.
    In this paper, I develop a theory on which each of a thing’s abundant properties is immanent in that thing. On the version of the theory I will propose, universals are abundant, each instantiated universal is immanent, and each uninstantiated universal is such that it could have been instantiated, in which case it would have been immanent. After setting out the theory, I will defend it from David Lewis’s argument that such a combination of immanence and abundance is absurd. I (...)
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  • Kinds as Universals: A Neo‑Aristotelian Approach.David Hommen - 2021 - Erkenntnis 86 (2):1-29.
    In his theory of categories, Aristotle introduces a distinction between two types of universals, i.e., kinds and attributes. While attributes determine how their subjects are, kinds determine what something is: kinds represent unified ways of being which account for the existence and identity of particular objects. Since its introduction into the philosophical discussion, the concept of a kind has attracted criticism. The most important objection argues that no separate category of kinds is needed because all kinds can be reduced to (...)
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  • Kinds as Universals: A Neo-Aristotelian Approach.David Hommen - 2021 - Erkenntnis 86 (2):295-323.
    In his theory of categories, Aristotle introduces a distinction between two types of universals, i.e., kinds and attributes. While attributes determine how their subjects are, kinds determine what something is: kinds represent unified ways of being which account for the existence and identity of particular objects. Since its introduction into the philosophical discussion, the concept of a kind has attracted criticism. The most important objection argues that no separate category of kinds is needed because all kinds can be reduced to (...)
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  • Haecceitism without individuals.Catharine Diehl - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    According to anti-individualism, the basic building blocks of the world are not individuals. The anti-individualist argues that standard, individual-entailing claims–for instance, that Theia is a cat–are mistaken in presupposing that there are individuals, but that such claims correspond to statements in a feature-placing language devoid of these presuppositions. Instead, the world is entirely made up of non-individualistic features–structurally akin to familiar examples such as it's raining or it's snowing–that are arranged in particular ways. Since features do not carve out individual (...)
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  • What Is a Thing?M. Oreste Fiocco - 2019 - Metaphilosophy 50 (5):649-669.
    ‘Thing’ in the titular question should be construed as having the utmost generality. In the relevant sense, a thing just is an entity, an existent, a being. The present task is to say what a thing of any category is. This task is, I believe, the primary one of any comprehensive and systematic metaphysics. Indeed, an answer provides the means for resolving perennial disputes concerning the integrity of the structure in reality—whether some of the relations among things are necessary merely (...)
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  • Sellars's ontological nominalism.Ryan Simonelli - 2022 - European Journal of Philosophy 30 (3):1041-1061.
    Wilfrid Sellars is widely known for two positions that he calls “nominalism.” On the one hand, there is his “psychological nominalism,” according to which any awareness one might have of abstract entities—be they properties, relations, or facts—is a thoroughly linguistic affair, and so cannot be presupposed in thinking about the process of learning a (first) language. On the other hand, there is his ontological nominalism, according to which the world, as it is in itself, is fundamentally a world of concrete (...)
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  • Panprotopsychism Instantiated.Daniel Giberman - 2022 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 8 (2):238-258.
    The problem of many-over-one asks how it can be that many properties are ever instantiated by one object. A putative solution might, for example, claim that the properties are appropriately bundled, or somehow tied to a bare particular. In this essay, the author argues that, surprisingly, an extant candidate solution to this problem is at the same time an independently developed candidate solution to the mind-body problem. Specifically, what is argued here to be the best version of the relata-specific bundle (...)
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  • Quantifying over the reals.Philip Hugly & Charles Sayward - 1994 - Synthese 101 (1):53 - 64.
    Peter Geach proposed a substitutional construal of quantification over thirty years ago. It is not standardly substitutional since it is not tied to those substitution instances currently available to us; rather, it is pegged to possible substitution instances. We argue that (i) quantification over the real numbers can be construed substitutionally following Geach's idea; (ii) a price to be paid, if it is that, is intuitionism; (iii) quantification, thus conceived, does not in itself relieve us of ontological commitment to real (...)
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  • An Armstrongian defense of dispositional monist accounts of laws of nature.Mousa Mohammadian - 2022 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 12 (3):1-15.
    Bird reveals an important problem at the heart of Armstrong’s theory of laws of nature: to explain how a law necessitates its corresponding regularity, Armstrong is committed to a vicious regress. In his very brief response, Armstrong gestures towards an argument that, as he admits, is more of a “speculation.” Later, Barker and Smart argue that a very similar problem threatens Bird’s dispositional monist theory of laws of nature and he is committed to a similar vicious regress. In this paper, (...)
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  • More Grounds for Grounding Nominalism.Alexandre Declos - 2020 - Philosophia 49 (1):49-70.
    In this paper, I examine Peter Schulte’s “Grounding Nominalism” (Schulte, 2018), understood as the claim that first-order properties and relations are grounded in the concrete particulars which instantiate them. While Schulte offered reasons to think that this view is consistent, along with answers to a number of objections, a more straightforward argument for GN is still needed. I take on this task here, by discussing and defending what I call the “argument from abstraction”. The latter, I suggest, offers more grounds (...)
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  • The Neutralist Analysis of Similarity.Javier Cumpa - 2021 - Philosophia 49 (1):37-47.
    Consider two similarity facts: a is similar to b with respect to G, and c is similar to d with respect to G. According to the Platonist approach to similarity, the analysis of such facts forces us to admit that similarity facts are to be analyzed into facts about universal similarities of the form: a is similar to b with respect to G, and c is similar to d with respect to G, where similarity is a universal. In this paper, (...)
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  • Pragmatism about Truth-Makers.John Capps - 2022 - Contemporary Pragmatism 19 (4):350-370.
    Truth-makers are the dark matter of metaphysics. On the one hand, truth-makers seem obvious and necessary: if there are truths then there must be something that makes these truths true. On the other hand, it’s proven difficult to say exactly what these truth-makers are. Even defenders disagree about what sort of entity truth-makers are or whether all truths have truth-makers. Skeptics have questioned whether truth-makers are actually so obvious and necessary, or even whether they exist at all. Here I offer (...)
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  • Confessions of a (Cheap) Sophisticated Substantivalist.Carolyn Brighouse - 2020 - Foundations of Physics 50 (4):348-359.
    I illustrate a challenge to a view that is a response to the Hole Argument. The view, sophisticated substantivalism, has been claimed to be the received view. While sophisticated substantivalism has many defenders, there is a fundamental tension in the view that has not received the attention it deserves. Anyone who defends or endorses sophisticated substantivalism, should acknowledge this challenge, and should either show why it is not serious or explain how to respond to it.
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  • Istovjetnost riječi.J. T. M. Miller - 2022 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 18 (2):2-26.
    Although the metaphysics of words remains a relatively understudied domain, one of the more discussed topics has been the question of how to account for the apparent sameness of words. Put one way, the question concerns what it is that makes two word- instances (or tokens) instances of the same word. In this paper, I argue that the existing solutions to the problems all fail as they take the problem of sameness of word to be a problem about how one (...)
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  • Istovjetnost riječi.J. T. M. Miller - 2022 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 18 (2):2-26.
    Although the metaphysics of words remains a relatively understudied domain, one of the more discussed topics has been the question of how to account for the apparent sameness of words. Put one way, the question concerns what it is that makes two word- instances (or tokens) instances of the same word. In this paper, I argue that the existing solutions to the problems all fail as they take the problem of sameness of word to be a problem about how one (...)
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  • Roles and their three facets: A foundational perspective.Fumiaki Toyoshima - 2021 - Applied ontology 16 (2):161-192.
    Roles remain nebulous entities, notwithstanding their extensive interdisciplinary research. This paper argues through a meta-ontological conceptual tool of grounding that there are three key facets of roles: a role position, a role specification, and a role potential. A foundational perspective on roles can be specified by “role choices” as to which facet of roles is primary. Role choices are illustrated with theories of roles that are built in compliance with four well-known upper ontologies: GFO, DOLCE, BFO, and UFO. The relationship (...)
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  • Is the abstract vs concrete distinction exhaustive & exclusive? Four reasons to be suspicious.Travis Dumsday - forthcoming - Analytic Philosophy.
    There is a widespread consensus within analytic metaphysics that the abstract versus concrete distinction, if valid at all, must be thought of as exhaustive and exclusive. I present four arguments designed to cast doubt on this consensus.
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  • Supertropestantivalism.Daniel Giberman - 2021 - Philosophical Quarterly 71 (4):pqaa080.
    According to the identity version of spacetime supersubstantivalism, material objects are numerically identical to spacetime regions. While the view has been commended for its parsimony and concordance with physics, it has not properly been assessed in light of the metaphysics of properties. The present essay fills this void by discerning several subspecies of identity supersubstantivalism, corresponding to various property ontologies. Finding them all wanting, the essay develops and defends a novel brand of supersubstantivalism based on the trope ontology. On this (...)
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  • How Particulars Naturally Belong to (Natural) Classes.Julien Nicolas Tricard - forthcoming - Philosophia:1-17.
    Among those who posit properties, liberals (mostly nominalists) admit abundant, ontologically free properties, which particulars possess whenever they satisfy the same predicate and belong to the same class, however artificial. I call them “L-properties” (for “Liberal”). Some liberals also admit that some few L-properties are natural, while most of them are artificial (the same applies to the corresponding classes). Others (mostly but not only realists) commit to a more discriminating use of the category: properties are sparse, they make for the (...)
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  • Analytic philosophy in Japan since 2000.Tora Koyama - 2022 - Asian Journal of Philosophy 1 (2):1-17.
    Since its inception, analytic philosophy has failed to attain dominance in Japan. However, the 21st century has seen analytic philosophy gain traction among Japanese philosophers. This paper, which examines the status quo of analytic philosophy in Japan since 2000, consists of two parts. The first part deals primarily with organizations—specifically, relevant associations, journals, conferences, universities, and publishers are illustrated. The second part explores key works in each area—namely, philosophy of science, philosophy of language, philosophy of logic and mathematics, philosophy of (...)
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  • No Case Against Disjunctive Properties.Xinkan Zhao - 2021 - Philosophia 49 (5):2293-2305.
    Meinertsen has recently put forward three arguments against disjunctive properties: the arguments from truthmaking, commonality, and causation. In this paper, I argue that all three arguments fail. The argument from truthmaking rests on the problematic notion of different types of truthmakers and is therefore itself problematic. The argument from commonality may hold but only at the cost of losing much of the philosophical significance of its conclusion. The argument from causation essentially collapses into the argument from truthmaking and is therefore (...)
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  • Why Digital Pictures Are Not Notational Representations.John Zeimbekis - 2015 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 73 (4):449-453.
  • Defending constituent ontology.Eric Yang - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (5):1207-1216.
    Constituent ontologies maintain that the properties of an object are either parts or something very much like parts of that object. Recently, such a view has been criticized as leading to a bizarre and problematic form of substance dualism and implying the existence of impossible objects. After briefly presenting constituent and relational ontologies, I respond to both objections, arguing that constituent ontology does not yield either of these two consequences and so is not shown to be an unacceptable ontological framework.
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  • Fundamental and Derivative Truths.J. R. G. Williams - 2010 - Mind 119 (473):103 - 141.
    This article investigates the claim that some truths are fundamentally or really true — and that other truths are not. Such a distinction can help us reconcile radically minimal metaphysical views with the verities of common sense. I develop an understanding of the distinction whereby Fundamentality is not itself a metaphysical distinction, but rather a device that must be presupposed to express metaphysical distinctions. Drawing on recent work by Rayo on anti-Quinean theories of ontological commitments, I formulate a rigourous theory (...)
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  • Processes and the philosophy of action.Andrea White - 2020 - Philosophical Explorations 23 (2):112-129.
    While the concept event has been an important tool in our thinking about causation and action, the concept process has not been appealed to so readily. However, recently, several philosophers have...
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  • Why the social sciences are irreducible.Tobias Hansson Wahlberg - 2019 - Synthese 196 (12):4961-4987.
    It is often claimed that the social sciences cannot be reduced to a lower-level individualistic science. The standard argument for this position is the Fodorian multiple realizability argument. Its defenders endorse token–token identities between “higher-level” social objects and pluralities/sums of “lower-level” individuals, but they maintain that the properties expressed by social science predicates are often multiply realizable, entailing that type–type identities between social and individualistic properties are ruled out. In this paper I argue that the multiple realizability argument for explanatory (...)
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  • Do We See Facts?Alfredo Vernazzani - 2020 - Mind and Language (4):674-693.
    Philosophers of perception frequently assume that we see actual states of affairs, or facts. Call this claim factualism. In his book, William Fish suggests that factualism is supported by phenomenological observation as well as by experimental studies on multiple object tracking and dynamic feature-object integration. In this paper, I examine the alleged evidence for factualism, focusing mainly on object detection and tracking. I argue that there is no scientific evidence for factualism. This conclusion has implications for studies on the phenomenology (...)
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  • The Metaphysics of Degrees.René van Woudenberg & Rik Peels - 2018 - European Journal of Philosophy 26 (1):46-65.
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  • Computer Science and Philosophy: Did Plato Foresee Object-Oriented Programming?Wojciech Tylman - 2018 - Foundations of Science 23 (1):159-172.
    This paper contains a discussion of striking similarities between influential philosophical concepts of the past and the approaches currently employed in selected areas of computer science. In particular, works of the Pythagoreans, Plato, Abelard, Ash’arites, Malebranche and Berkeley are presented and contrasted with such computer science ideas as digital computers, object-oriented programming, the modelling of an object’s actions and causality in virtual environments, and 3D graphics rendering. The intention of this paper is to provoke the computer science community to go (...)
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  • Propositions and Parthood: The Universe and Anti-Symmetry.Chris Tillman & Gregory Fowler - 2012 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (3):525 - 539.
    It is plausible that the universe exists: a thing such that absolutely everything is a part of it. It is also plausible that singular, structured propositions exist: propositions that literally have individuals as parts. Furthermore, it is plausible that for each thing, there is a singular, structured proposition that has it as a part. Finally, it is plausible that parthood is a partial ordering: reflexive, transitive, and anti-symmetric. These plausible claims cannot all be correct. We canvass some costs of denying (...)
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  • Missing systems and the face value practice.Martin Thomson-Jones - 2010 - Synthese 172 (2):283-299.
    Call a bit of scientific discourse a description of a missing system when (i) it has the surface appearance of an accurate description of an actual, concrete system (or kind of system) from the domain of inquiry, but (ii) there are no actual, concrete systems in the world around us fitting the description it contains, and (iii) that fact is recognised from the outset by competent practitioners of the scientific discipline in question. Scientific textbooks, classroom lectures, and journal articles abound (...)
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  • À la rescousse du platonisme moral.Christine Tappolet - 2000 - Dialogue 39 (3):531-556.
    Moral platonism, the claim that moral entities are both objective and prescriptive, is generally thought to be a dead end. In an attempt to defend a moderate form of moral platonism or more precisely platonism about values, I first argue that several of the many versions of this doctrine are not committed to ontological extravagances. I then discuss an important objection due to John McDowell and developed by Michael Smith, according to which moral platonism is incoherent. I argue that objectivism (...)
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  • On representationalism, common-factorism, and whether consciousness is here and now.Pär Sundström - 2018 - Philosophical Studies:1-12.
    A strong form of representationalism says that every conscious property of every mental state can be identified with some part of the state’s representational properties. A weaker representationalism says that some conscious property of some mental state can be identified with some part of the state’s representational properties. David Papineau has recently argued that all such theories are incorrect since they construe consciousness as consisting in “relations to propositions or other abstract objects outside space and time”, whereas consciousness is “concrete” (...)
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  • Mathematical form in the world.David Woodruff Smith - 2002 - Philosophia Mathematica 10 (2):102-129.
    This essay explores an ideal notion of form (mathematical structure) that embraces logical, phenomenological, and ontological form. Husserl envisioned a correlation among forms of expression, thought, meaning, and object—positing ideal forms on all these levels. The most puzzling formal entities Husserl discussed were those he called ‘manifolds’. These manifolds, I propose, are forms of complex states of affairs or partial possible worlds representable by forms of theories (compare structuralism). Accordingly, I sketch an intentionality-based semantics correlating these four Husserlian levels of (...)
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  • Where's the Beef? Phenomenal Concepts as Both Demonstrative and Substantial.Robert Schroer - 2010 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (3):505-522.
    One popular materialist response to the explanatory gap identifies phenomenal concepts with type-demonstrative concepts. This kind of response, however, faces a serious challenge: that our phenomenal concepts seem to provide a richer characterization of their referents than just the demonstrative characterization of 'that quality'. In this paper, I develop a materialist account that beefs up the contents of phenomenal concepts while retaining the idea that these contents contain demonstrative elements. I illustrate this account by focusing on our phenomenal concepts of (...)
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  • Can Truthmaker Theorists Claim Ontological Free Lunches?Peter Schulte - 2014 - European Journal of Philosophy 22 (2):249-268.
    Truthmaker theorists hold that propositions about higher-level entities (e.g. the proposition that there is a heap of sand) are often made true by lower-level entities (e.g. by facts about the configuration of fundamental particles). This generates a problem: what should we say about these higher-level entities? On the one hand, they must exist (since there are true propositions about them), on the other hand, it seems that they are completely superfluous and should be banished for reasons of ontological parsimony. Some (...)
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  • Which Are the Genuine Properties?Bradley Rives - 2015 - Metaphilosophy 46 (1):104-126.
    This article considers three views about which properties are genuine. According to the first view, we should look to successful commonsense and scientific explanations in determining which properties are genuine. On this view, predicates that figure in such explanations thereby pick out genuine properties. According to the second view, the only predicates that pick out genuine properties are those that figure in our best scientific explanations. On this view, predicates that figure in commonsense explanations pick out genuine properties only if (...)
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  • The Genealogy of Universals: The Metaphysical Origins of Analytic Philosophy.Katarina Perovic - 2019 - Analysis 79 (2):359-363.
    Not long ago I found myself at a metaphysics conference in which one of the speakers right at the outset declared dismissively that he would be doing metaphysics ‘of the last five minutes’. Everybody laughed. I was horrified. A traditional metaphysical problem was presented and discussed as it had been set out by a contemporary philosopher, and we were all expected to take for granted the parameters of the debate as they were being presented, without further questioning and examining of (...)
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