Tropes and qualitative change

Noûs 58 (1):180-201 (2023)
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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 that change (in a special sense of ‘part’), so tropes can change too. After some preliminaries, I present the argument carefully and discuss the operant notions. I then discuss each premise in turn. I respond to the charge that the view isn't realist, and to objections based on identity‐conditions for tropes. I describe both substratum‐ and bundle‐theoretic versions of the view, and finally, show what the view buys us.



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Paul R. Audi
University of Rochester

References found in this work

On the Plurality of Worlds.David Lewis - 1986 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 178 (3):388-390.
Every Thing Must Go: Metaphysics Naturalized.James Ladyman & Don Ross - 2007 - In James Ladyman & Don Ross (eds.), Every thing must go: metaphysics naturalized. New York: Oxford University Press.
Mental causation.Stephen Yablo - 1992 - Philosophical Review 101 (2):245-280.
Material Beings.Peter Van Inwagen - 1990 - Philosophy 67 (259):126-127.

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