Synthese 199 (5-6):13009-13033 (2021)

Impure Eliminativism about Categories is the idea that ontological categories are not wholly eliminable insofar as they have epistemic value to understand the nature of ordinary and scientific objects. From the perspective of Impure Eliminativism, different criticisms have been addressed to substantialist approaches in metaphysics and, in particular, to John Heil’s substance-mode two-category ontology. The aim of this paper is to contribute to this critical project by extending its scope to C. B. Martin’s substantialism. The thesis I defend is that Martin’s substratum-trope two-category ontology satisfies the elimination criterion of Impure Eliminativism for ontological categories because either it is inconsistent or else it supplies a non-exhaustive and non-exclusive categorization of ordinary and scientific objects and their properties. First, I introduce Impure Eliminativism and its novel elimination criterion for ontological categories, and I survey recent criticisms of substantialism from that perspective. Second, I show that nothing satisfies Martin’s definition of substratum in a way that is consistent with Martin’s view on tropes. Third, I note that the attempts to avoid the inconsistency make the categorization supplied by Martin’s ontology either non-exhaustive or non-exclusive. I then conclude that Martin’s substratum-trope categorial system should be eliminated in accordance with the criterion of categorial elimination of Impure Eliminativism.
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DOI 10.1007/s11229-021-03364-5
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References found in this work BETA

Truth and Truthmakers.D. M. Armstrong - 2004 - Cambridge University Press.
The Universe as We Find It.John Heil - 2012 - Oxford University Press.
The Mind in Nature.C. B. Martin - 2007 - Oxford University Press.

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