Authors
Barry Lee
University of York
Abstract
Subtraction arguments support the view that there might have been nothing. The best-developed SA to date, due to David Efird and Tom Stoneham, is claimed by its authors to entail that there are worlds in which there are space-time points but no concrete objects: Efird and Stoneham hold that space-time points are not concrete and that a world made up from them alone contains nothing concrete. In this paper it is argued that whole space-times are concrete and subtractable, so that a subtraction argument commits us to a bolder conclusion: namely, that there are worlds in which there is no space-time. This result has far-reaching consequences: it supports the view that there might have been no time; and constrains accounts of possible worlds. In the course of developing this revised subtraction argument, I counter suggestions that SAs are question-begging.
Keywords subtraction argument  metaphysical nihilism  material objects  concrete objects  space-time  possible worlds  empty world
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 69,160
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Every Thing Must Go: Metaphysics Naturalized.James Ladyman & Don Ross - 2007 - In James Ladyman, Don Ross, David Spurrett & John Collier (eds.), Every Thing Must Go: Metaphysics Naturalized. Oxford University Press.
Necessary Existents.Timothy Williamson - 2002 - In A. O'Hear (ed.), Logic, thought, and language. Cambridge University Press. pp. 233-251.
Maximality and Intrinsic Properties.Theodore Sider - 2001 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 63 (2):357 - 364.
Philosophy of Science and Metaphysics.Craig Callender - 2011 - In Steven French & Juha Saatsi (eds.), Continuum Companion to the Philosophy of Science. Continuum. pp. 33--54.

View all 14 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Subtractability and Concreteness.Ross P. Cameron - 2007 - Philosophical Quarterly 57 (227):273 - 279.
The Ethics of Empty Worlds.Roy A. Sorensen - 2005 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83 (3):349-356.
The Subtraction Argument for the Possibility of Free Mass.David Efird & Tom Stoneham - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 80 (1):50-57.
Identity, Modality, and Space-Time.Ellis Joseph Crasnow - 1983 - Dissertation, University of Southern California
The Subtraction Argument for the Possibility of Free Mass.David Efird & Tom Stoneham - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 80 (1):50-57.
Justifying Metaphysical Nihilism: A Response to Cameron.David Efird & Tom Stoneham - 2009 - Philosophical Quarterly 59 (234):132-137.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2017-02-18

Total views
51 ( #220,527 of 2,499,413 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #209,699 of 2,499,413 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes