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New powers for Dispositionalism

Synthese (ST: New Foundations for Disposit):1-30 (2020)

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  1. Abstract Entities.Sam Cowling - 2017 - Routledge.
    Think of a number, any number, or properties like fragility and humanity. These and other abstract entities are radically different from concrete entities like electrons and elbows. While concrete entities are located in space and time, have causes and effects, and are known through empirical means, abstract entities like meanings and possibilities are remarkably different. They seem to be immutable and imperceptible and to exist "outside" of space and time. This book provides a comprehensive critical assessment of the problems raised (...)
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  • Naming and Necessity.S. Kripke - 1972 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 45 (4):665-666.
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  • What is a Law of Nature?D. M. Armstrong - 1983 - Cambridge University Press.
    This is a study of a crucial and controversial topic in metaphysics and the philosophy of science: the status of the laws of nature. D. M. Armstrong works out clearly and in comprehensive detail a largely original view that laws are relations between properties or universals. The theory is continuous with the views on universals and more generally with the scientific realism that Professor Armstrong has advanced in earlier publications. He begins here by mounting an attack on the orthodox and (...)
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  • Essays on the Active Powers of Man.Thomas Reid - 1788 - john Bell, and G.G.J. & J. Robinson.
    The Scottish philosopher Thomas Reid first published Essays on Active Powers of Man in 1788 while he was Professor of Philosophy at King's College, Aberdeen. The work contains a set of essays on active power, the will, principles of action, the liberty of moral agents, and morals. Reid was a key figure in the Scottish Enlightenment and one of the founders of the 'common sense' school of philosophy. In Active Powers Reid gives his fullest exploration of sensus communis as the (...)
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  • Theories of Location.Josh Parsons - 2007 - Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 3:201.
  • A Defense of Presentism.Ned Markosian - 2004 - Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 1:47-82.
    ∗ Apologies to Mark Hinchliff for stealing the title of his dissertation. (See Hinchliff, A Defense of Presentism. As it turns out, however, the version of Presentism defended here is different from the version defended by Hinchliff. See Section 3.1 below.).
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  • Slots in Universals.Cody Gilmore - 2013 - Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 8:187-233.
    Slot theory is the view that (i) there exist such entities as argument places, or ‘slots’, in universals, and that (ii) a universal u is n-adic if and only if there are n slots in u. I argue that those who take properties and relations to be abundant, fine-grained, non-set-theoretical entities face pressure to be slot theorists. I note that slots permit a natural account of the notion of adicy. I then consider a series of ‘slot-free’ accounts of that notion (...)
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  • Absolutism Vs Comparativism About Quantity.Shamik Dasgupta - 2013 - Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 8:105-150.
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  • Powers: A Study in Metaphysics.George Molnar - 2003 - Oxford University Press.
    George Molnar came to see that the solution to a number of the problems of contemporary philosophy lay in the development of an alternative to Hume's metaphysics. This alternative would have real causal powers at its centre. Molnar set about developing a thorough account of powers that might persuade those who remained, perhaps unknowingly, in the grip of Humean assumptions. He succeeded in producing something both highly focused and at the same time wide-ranging. He showed both that the notion of (...)
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  • Is Conceivability a Guide to Possibility?Stephen Yablo - 1993 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 53 (1):1-42.
  • Ontological Realism.Theodore Sider - 2009 - In David Chalmers, David Manley & Ryan Wasserman (eds.), Metametaphysics: New Essays on the Foundations of Ontology. Oxford University Press. pp. 384--423.
    In , Peter van Inwagen asked a good question. (Asking the right question is often the hardest part.) He asked: what do you have to do to some objects to get them to compose something---to bring into existence some further thing made up of those objects? Glue them together or what?1 Some said that you don’t have to do anything.2 No matter what you do to the objects, they’ll always compose something further, no matter how they are arranged. Thus we (...)
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  • Writing the Book of the World.Theodore Sider - 2011 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
    In order to perfectly describe the world, it is not enough to speak truly. One must also use the right concepts - including the right logical concepts. One must use concepts that "carve at the joints", that give the world's "structure". There is an objectively correct way to "write the book of the world". Much of metaphysics, as traditionally conceived, is about the fundamental nature of reality; in the present terms, this is about the world's structure. Metametaphysics - inquiry into (...)
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  • On What Grounds What.Jonathan Schaffer - 2009 - In David Manley, David J. Chalmers & Ryan Wasserman (eds.), Metametaphysics: New Essays on the Foundations of Ontology. Oxford University Press. pp. 347-383.
    On the now dominant Quinean view, metaphysics is about what there is. Metaphysics so conceived is concerned with such questions as whether properties exist, whether meanings exist, and whether numbers exist. I will argue for the revival of a more traditional Aristotelian view, on which metaphysics is about what grounds what. Metaphysics so revived does not bother asking whether properties, meanings, and numbers exist (of course they do!) The question is whether or not they are fundamental.
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  • Metaphysical Dependence: Grounding and Reduction.Gideon Rosen - 2010 - In Bob Hale & Aviv Hoffmann (eds.), Modality: Metaphysics, Logic, and Epistemology. Oxford University Press. pp. 109-135.
  • The Construction of Logical Space.Agustín Rayo - 2013 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
    Our conception of logical space is the set of distinctions we use to navigate the world. Agustn Rayo argues that this is shaped by acceptance or rejection of 'just is'-statements: e.g. 'to be composed of water just is to be composed of H2O'. He offers a novel conception of metaphysical possibility, and a new trivialist philosophy of mathematics.
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  • The Nature of Necessity.Alvin Plantinga - 1974 - Oxford, England: Clarendon Press.
    This book, one of the first full-length studies of the modalities to emerge from the debate to which Saul Kripke, David Lewis, Ruth Marcus, and others are contributing, is an exploration and defense of the notion of modality de re, the idea that objects have both essential and accidental properties. Plantinga develops his argument by means of the notion of possible worlds and ranges over such key problems as the nature of essence, transworld identity, negative existential propositions, and the existence (...)
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  • Dispositions and Conditionals.C. B. Martin - 1994 - Philosophical Quarterly 44 (174):1-8.
  • How to Speak of the Colors.Mark Johnston - 1992 - Philosophical Studies 68 (3):221-263.
  • Essence and Modality.Kit Fine - 1994 - Philosophical Perspectives 8 (Logic and Language):1-16.
    It is my aim in this paper to show that the contemporary assimilation of essence to modality is fundamentally misguided and that, as a consequence, the corresponding conception of metaphysics should be given up. It is not my view that the modal account fails to capture anything which might reasonably be called a concept of essence. My point, rather, is that the notion of essence which is of central importance to the metaphysics of identity is not to be understood in (...)
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  • Metametaphysics: New Essays on the Foundations of Ontology.Ryan Wasserman, David Manley & David Chalmers (eds.) - 2009 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
  • Does Conceivability Entail Possibility.David J. Chalmers - 2002 - In Tamar Szabo Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press. pp. 145--200.
    There is a long tradition in philosophy of using a priori methods to draw conclusions about what is possible and what is necessary, and often in turn to draw conclusions about matters of substantive metaphysics. Arguments like this typically have three steps: first an epistemic claim , from there to a modal claim , and from there to a metaphysical claim.
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  • Dispositions and Antidotes.Alexander Bird - 1998 - Philosophical Quarterly 48 (191):227-234.
    In ‘Finkish Dispositions’1 David Lewis proposes an analysis of dispositions which improves on the simple conditional analysis. In this paper I show that Lewis’ analysis still fails. I also argue that repairs are of no avail, and suggest why this is so.
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  • The Identity of the Categorical and the Dispositional.Galen Strawson - 2008 - Analysis 68 (4):271-282.
    Suppose that X and Y can’t possibly exist apart in reality; then—by definition—there’s no real distinction between them, only a conceptual distinction. There’s a conceptual distinction between a rectilinear figure’s triangularity and its trilaterality, for example, but no real distinction. In fundamental metaphysics there is no real distinction between an object’s categorical properties and its dispositional properties. So too there is no real distinction between an object and its properties. And in fundamental metaphysics, for X and Y to be such (...)
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  • Distributional Properties.Josh Parsons - 2004 - In Frank Jackson & Graham Priest (eds.), Lewisian Themes: The Philosophy of David K. Lewis. Clarendon Press.
     
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  • Impure Sets May Be Located: A Reply to Cook.Nikk Effingham - 2012 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 1 (4):330-336.
    Cook argues that impure sets are not located. But ‘location’ is an ambiguous word and when we resolve those ambiguities it turns out that on no resolution is Cook's argument compelling.
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  • Essence and Definition by Abstraction.Bob Hale - 2018 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 8):2001-2017.
    We may define words or concepts, and we may also, as Aristotle and others have thought, define the things for which words stand and of which concepts are concepts. Definitions of words or concepts may be explicit or implicit, and may seek to report preexisting synonymies, as Quine put it, but they may instead be wholly or partly stipulative. Definition by abstraction, of which Hume’s principle is a much discussed example, seek to define a term-forming operator, such as the number (...)
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  • A Powerful Theory of Causation.Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum - 2010 - In Anna Marmodoro (ed.), The Metaphysics of Powers: Their Grounding and Their Manifestations. Routledge. pp. 143--159.
    Hume thought that if you believed in powers, you believed in necessary connections in nature. He was then able to argue that there were none such because anything could follow anything else. But Hume wrong-footed his opponents. A power does not necessitate its manifestations: rather, it disposes towards them in a way that is less than necessary but more than purely contingent. -/- In this paper a dispositional theory of causation is offered. Causes dispose towards their effects and often produce (...)
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  • Troubles with Theoretical Virtues: Resisting Theoretical Utility Arguments in Metaphysics.OtÁvio Bueno & Scott A. Shalkowski - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 101 (2):456-469.
  • Inverse Functionalism and the Individuation of Powers.David Yates - 2018 - Synthese 195 (10):4525-4550.
    In the pure powers ontology (PPO), basic physical properties have wholly dispositional essences. PPO has clear advantages over categoricalist ontologies, which suffer from familiar epistemological and metaphysical problems. However, opponents argue that because it contains no qualitative properties, PPO lacks the resources to individuate powers, and generates a regress. The challenge for those who take such arguments seriously is to introduce qualitative properties without reintroducing the problems that PPO was meant to solve. In this paper, I distinguish the core claim (...)
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  • Potentiality: From Dispositions to Modality.Barbara Vetter - 2015 - Oxford, England and New York, NY, USA: Oxford University Press.
    Individual objects have potentials: paper has the potential to burn, an acorn has the potential to turn into a tree, some people have the potential to run a mile in less than four minutes. Barbara Vetter provides a systematic investigation into the metaphysics of such potentials, and an account of metaphysical modality based on them. -/- In contemporary philosophy, potentials have been recognized mostly in the form of so-called dispositions: solubility, fragility, and so on. Vetter takes dispositions as her starting (...)
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  • Mere Possibilities: Metaphysical Foundations of Modal Semantics.Robert Stalnaker - 2012 - Princeton University Press.
    The book also sheds new light on the nature of metaphysical theorizing by exploring the interaction of semantic and metaphysical issues, the connections between different metaphysical issues, and the nature of ontological commitment.
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  • The Concept of Mind.Gilbert Ryle - 1950 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 1 (4):328-332.
     
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  • An Introduction to Non-Classical Logic: From If to Is.Graham Priest - 2008 - Cambridge University Press.
    This revised and considerably expanded 2nd edition brings together a wide range of topics, including modal, tense, conditional, intuitionist, many-valued, paraconsistent, relevant, and fuzzy logics. Part 1, on propositional logic, is the old Introduction, but contains much new material. Part 2 is entirely new, and covers quantification and identity for all the logics in Part 1. The material is unified by the underlying theme of world semantics. All of the topics are explained clearly using devices such as tableau proofs, and (...)
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  • The Extent of Metaphysical Necessity.Daniel Nolan - 2011 - Philosophical Perspectives 25 (1):313-339.
    A lot of philosophers engage in debates about what claims are “metaphysically necessary”, and a lot more assume with little argument that some classes of claims have the status of “metaphysical necessity”. I think we can usefully replace questions about metaphysical necessity with five other questions which each capture some of what people may have had in mind when talking about metaphysical necessity. This paper explains these five other questions, and then discusses the question “how much of metaphysics is metaphysically (...)
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  • The Identity Theory of Powers Revised.Joaquim Giannotti - 2021 - Erkenntnis 86 (3):603-621.
    Dispositionality and qualitativity are key notions to describe the world that we inhabit. Dispositionality is a matter of what a thing is disposed to do in certain circumstances. Qualitativity is a matter of how a thing is like. According to the Identity Theory of powers, every fundamental property is at once dispositional and qualitative, or a powerful quality. Canonically, the Identity Theory holds a contentious identity claim between a property’s dispositionality and its qualitativity. In the literature, this view faces a (...)
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  • On Linking Dispositions and Conditionals.David Manley & Ryan Wasserman - 2008 - Mind 117 (465):59-84.
    Analyses of dispositional ascriptions in terms of conditional statements famously confront the problems of finks and masks. We argue that conditional analyses of dispositions, even those tailored to avoid finks and masks, face five further problems. These are the problems of: (i) Achilles' heels, (ii) accidental closeness, (iii) comparatives, (iv) explaining context sensitivity, and (v) absent stimulus conditions. We conclude by offering a proposal that avoids all seven of these problems.
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  • Real Essentialism.David S. Oderberg - 2007 - New York: Routledge.
    _Real Essentialism_ presents a comprehensive defence of neo-Aristotelian essentialism. Do objects have essences? Must they be the kinds of things they are in spite of the changes they undergo? Can we know what things are really like – can we define and classify reality? Many, if not most, philosophers doubt this, influenced by centuries of empiricism, and by the anti-essentialism of Wittgenstein, Quine, Popper, and other thinkers. _Real Essentialism_ reinvigorates the tradition of realist, essentialist metaphysics, defending the reality and knowability (...)
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  • The Conscious Mind: In Search of a Fundamental Theory.David J. Chalmers - 1996 - Oxford University Press.
    The book is an extended study of the problem of consciousness. After setting up the problem, I argue that reductive explanation of consciousness is impossible , and that if one takes consciousness seriously, one has to go beyond a strict materialist framework. In the second half of the book, I move toward a positive theory of consciousness with fundamental laws linking the physical and the experiential in a systematic way. Finally, I use the ideas and arguments developed earlier to defend (...)
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  • Dispositionalism and the Modal Operators.David Yates - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (2):411-424.
    Actualists of a certain stripe—dispositionalists—hold that metaphysical modality is grounded in the powers of actual things. Roughly: p is possible iff something has, or some things have, the power to bring it about that p. Extant critiques of dispositionalism focus on its material adequacy, and question whether there are enough powers to account for all the possibilities we intuitively want to countenance. For instance, it seems possible that none of the actual contingent particulars ever existed, but it is impossible to (...)
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  • Time and Chance.David Z. Albert - 2000 - Harvard University Press.
    This book is an attempt to get to the bottom of an acute and perennial tension between our best scientific pictures of the fundamental physical structure of the ...
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  • The Essence of Dispositional Essentialism.David Yates - 2013 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 87 (1):93-128.
    Dispositional essentialists argue that physical properties have their causal roles essentially. This is typically taken to mean that physical properties are identical to dispositions. I argue that this is untenable, and that we must instead say that properties bestow dispositions. I explore what it is for a property to have such a role essentially. Dispositional essentialists argue for their view by citing certain epistemological and metaphysical implications, and I appeal to these implications to place desiderata on the concept of essence (...)
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  • Finality Revived: Powers and Intentionality.David S. Oderberg - 2017 - Synthese 194 (7):2387-2425.
    Proponents of physical intentionality argue that the classic hallmarks of intentionality highlighted by Brentano are also found in purely physical powers. Critics worry that this idea is metaphysically obscure at best, and at worst leads to panpsychism or animism. I examine the debate in detail, finding both confusion and illumination in the physical intentionalist thesis. Analysing a number of the canonical features of intentionality, I show that they all point to one overarching phenomenon of which both the mental and the (...)
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  • Varieties of Ontological Dependence.Kathrin Koslicki - 2012 - In Fabrice Correia & Benjamin Schnieder (eds.), Metaphysical Grounding: Understanding the Structure of Reality. Cambridge University Press. pp. 186.
    A significant reorientation is currently under way in analytic metaphysics, away from an almost exclusive focus on questions of existence and towards a greater concentration on questions concerning the dependence of one type of phenomenon on another. Surprisingly, despite the central role dependence has played in philosophy since its inception, interest in a systematic study of this concept has only recently surged among contemporary metaphysicians. In this paper, I focus on a promising account of ontological dependence in terms of a (...)
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  • Indefinitely Descending Ground.Einar Duenger Bohn - 2018 - In Ricki Bliss & Graham Priest (eds.), Reality and its Structure. Oxford University Press. pp. 167-181.
    In this paper I argue against grounding being necessarily well-founded, and provide some reasons to think it's actually not well-founded.
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  • Senses of Essence.Kit Fine - 1995 - In Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Diana Raffman & Nicholas Asher (eds.), Modality, Morality and Belief. Essays in Honor of Ruth Barcan Marcus. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 53-73.
     
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  • The Logical Structure of Kinds.Eric Funkhouser - 2014 - Oxford University Press.
    Only by classifying things into kinds can we gain knowledge beyond memory and perception. Eric Funkhouser uncovers a logical structure that is common to many, if not all, classificatory systems, given by the determination dimensions of kinds. His account of multiple realizability provides standards for establishing the autonomy of the sciences.
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  • Reality Making.Mark Jago (ed.) - 2016 - Oxford University Press UK.
    What makes up reality, and how? What kinds of entity are fundamental to reality, and how do dependent entities depend on the fundamental ones? How does one entity metaphysically ground another? These questions are central to contemporary metaphysics. The papers in this collection, written by a new generation of metaphysicians, address these and related questions. They investigate the metaphysical concepts of grounding and fundamentality, and the relationship between the fundamental and all the other parts of reality. Together, these papers represent (...)
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  • The Palgrave Handbook of Philosophical Methods.Chris Daly (ed.) - 2015 - Palgrave-Macmillan.
    The Palgrave Handbook of Philosophical Methods contains twenty-six original and substantive papers examining a wide selection of philosophical methods. Drawing upon an international range of leading contributors, this Handbook will help shape future debates about how philosophy should be done. Topics explored include philosophical disagreement, thought experiments, intuitions, rational reflection, conceptual analysis, explanation, parsimony, and experimental philosophy. Written in a clear and accessible form, and drawing upon the most recent thinking in the field, the papers will be of particular interest (...)
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  • The Impossible: An Essay on Hyperintensionality.Mark Jago - 2014 - Oxford University Press.
    Mark Jago presents an original philosophical account of meaningful thought: in particular, how it is meaningful to think about things that are impossible. We think about impossible things all the time. We can think about alchemists trying to turn base metal to gold, and about unfortunate mathematicians trying to square the circle. We may ponder whether God exists; and philosophers frequently debate whether properties, numbers, sets, moral and aesthetic qualities, and qualia exist. In many philosophical or mathematical debates, when one (...)
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  • Aspects of Psychologism.Tim Crane - 2014 - Harvard University Press.
    Aspects of Psychologism is a penetrating look into fundamental philosophical questions of consciousness, perception, and the experience we have of our mental lives. Psychologism, in Tim Crane’s formulation, presents the mind as a single subject-matter to be investigated not only empirically and conceptually but also phenomenologically: through the systematic examination of consciousness and thought from the subject’s point of view.
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