Worldly Indeterminacy: A Rough Guide

In Frank Jackson & Graham Priest (eds.), Lewisian Themes: The Philosophy of David K. Lewis. pp. 196-209 (2004)
  Copy   BIBTEX


This paper defends the idea that there might be vagueness or indeterminacy in the world itself---as opposed to merely in our representations of the world---against the charges of incoherence and unintelligibility. First we consider the idea that the world might contain vague *properties and relations*; we show that this idea is already implied by certain well-understood views concerning the semantics of vague predicates (most notably the fuzzy view). Next we consider the idea that the world might contain vague *objects*; we argue that an object is indeterminate in a certain respect (colour, size, etc.) just in case it is a borderline case of a maximally specific colour (size, etc.) property. Finally we consider the idea that the *world as a whole* might be indeterminate; we argue that the world is indeterminate just in case it lacks a determinate division into determinate objects.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 92,168

External links

  • This entry has no external links. Add one.
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Worldly Indeterminacy: A Rough Guide.Nicholas J. J. Smith & Gideon Rosen - 2004 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (Issue in Honour of David Lewis):185-198.
Worldly indeterminacy: A rough guide.Nicholas J. J. Smith & Gideon Rosen - 2004 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (1):185 – 198.
Deconstructing Ontological Vagueness.Matti Eklund - 2008 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 38 (1):117-140.
Identity and Indeterminacy.David Winthrop Cowles - 1991 - Dissertation, University of Massachusetts Amherst
How Many there Are Isn’t.Jonah P. B. Goldwater - 2020 - Philosophia 48 (3):1037-1057.
Metaphysical Vagueness Without Vague Objects.Al Abasnezhad & C. S. I. Jenkins - 2018 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 7 (4):278-283.
Vague Naturalness as Ersatz Metaphysical Vagueness.Rohan Sud - 2018 - Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 11:243–277.


Added to PP


6 months

Historical graph of downloads

Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.
How can I increase my downloads?

Author Profiles

Nicholas J. J. Smith
University of Sydney
Gideon Rosen
Princeton University

Citations of this work

Quantum indeterminacy and the double-slit experiment.Claudio Calosi & Jessica Wilson - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (10):3291-3317.
Ground by Law.Gideon Rosen - 2017 - Philosophical Issues 27 (1):279-301.
Moral Vagueness: A Dilemma for Non-Naturalism.Cristian Constantinescu - 2014 - In Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics: Volume 9. Oxford University Press. pp. 152-185.

View all 21 citations / Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references