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  1. Robert Merrihew Adams (1979). Primitive Thisness and Primitive Identity. Journal of Philosophy 76 (1):5-26.
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  2. Peter Ainsworth (2011). Ontic Structural Realism and the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles. Erkenntnis 75 (1):67-84.
    Recently, there has been a debate as to whether or not the principle of the identity of indiscernibles (the PII) is compatible with quantum physics. It is also sometimes argued that the answer to this question has implications for the debate over the tenability of ontic structural realism (OSR). The central aim of this paper is to establish what relationship there is (if any) between the PII and OSR. It is argued that one common interpretation of OSR is undermined if (...)
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  3. Edwin B. Allaire (1967). Things, Relations and Identity. Philosophy of Science 34 (3):260-272.
    Philosophers have long believed that if the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles were logically true, there would be no problem of individuation. I show (a) that if spatial relations are, as seems plausible, of such a nature that it makes no sense to say of one thing that it is related to itself, then the Principle is a logical truth, asserting that a certain kind of state of affairs is impossible because the kind of sentence purporting to express it (...)
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  4. Jonas Rafael Becker Arenhart (2013). Weak Discernibility in Quantum Mechanics: Does It Save PII? Axiomathes 23 (3):461-484.
    The Weak Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles (weak PII), states that numerically distinct items must be discernible by a symmetrical and irreflexive relation. Recently, some authors have proposed that weak PII holds in non relativistic quantum mechanics, contradicting a long tradition claiming PII to be simply false in that theory. The question that arises then is: are relations allowed in the scope of PII? In this paper, we propose that quantum mechanics does not help us in deciding matters concerning (...)
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  5. R. L. Barnette (1978). Does Quantum Mechanics Disprove the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles? Philosophy of Science 45 (3):466-470.
  6. Jiri Benovsky (2006). A Modal Bundle Theory. Metaphysica 7 (2).
    If ordinary particulars are bundles of properties, and if properties are said to be universals, then three well-known objections arise : no particular can change, all particulars have all of their properties essentially (even the most insignificant ones), and there cannot be two numerically distinct but qualitatively indiscernible particulars. In this paper, I try to make a little headway on these issues and see how the objections can be met, if one accepts a certain view about persistence through time and (...)
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  7. Gustav Bergmann (1953). The Identity of Indiscernibles and the Formalist Definition of "Identity". Mind 62 (245):75-79.
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  8. Max Black (1952). The Identity of Indiscernibles. Mind 61 (242):153-164.
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  9. Ralph M. Blake (1927). The Identity of Indiscernibles and the Principle of Individuation. Philosophical Review 36 (1):44-57.
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  10. Michael C. Bradley (1986). Russell and the Identity of Indiscernibles. History of Philosophy Quarterly 3 (3):325 - 333.
    The fact of russell's changes of mind over the identity of indiscernibles is not in dispute, but what was his final view? several recent writers have portrayed the late russell as not regarding the identity of indiscernibles as necessary, or at any rate as being indecisive or restrictive about its necessity. the present paper argues that such readings of russell are untenable.
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  11. Phillip Bricker (forthcoming). Composition as a Kind of Identity. Inquiry.
    Composition as identity, as I understand it, is a theory of the composite structure of reality. The theory’s underlying logic is irreducibly plural; its fundamental primitive is a generalized identity relation that takes either plural or singular arguments. Strong versions of the theory that incorporate a generalized version of the indiscernibility of identicals are incompatible with the framework of plural logic, and should be rejected. Weak versions of the theory that are based on the idea that composition is merely analogous (...)
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  12. Phillip Bricker (forthcoming). Composition as a Kind of Identity. Inquiry.
    Composition as identity, as I understand it, is a theory of the composite structure of reality. The theory’s underlying logic is irreducibly plural; its fundamental primitive is a generalized identity relation that takes either plural or singular arguments. Strong versions of the theory that incorporate a generalized version of the indiscernibility of identicals are incompatible with the framework of plural logic, and should be rejected. Weak versions of the theory that are based on the idea that composition is merely analogous (...)
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  13. Claudio Calosi & Achille C. Varzi (2014). Back to Black. Ratio 27 (4).
    This is a brief sequel to Max Black's classic dialogue on the Identity of Indiscernibles. Interlocutor A defends the bundle theory by endorsing the (by now popular) view according to which Black's world does not contain two indiscernible spheres but rather a single, bi-located sphere. His opponent, B, objects that A cannot distinguish such a world from a world with a single, uniquely located sphere, hence that the view in question adds nothing to A's original response to Black's challenge. A (...)
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  14. Massimiliano Carrara, Antonio M. Nunziante & Gabriele Tomasi (eds.) (2004). Individuals, Minds and Bodies: Themes From Leibniz. Franz Steiner Verlag.
    The other aim of the volume is to show that there is a close semantic connection between the concepts of individual, mind and body in Leibniz.
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  15. Albert Casullo (1982). Particulars, Substrata, and the Identity of Indiscernibles. Philosophy of Science 49 (4):591-603.
    This paper examines the view that ordinary particulars are complexes of universals. Russell's attempt to develop such a theory is articulated and defended against some common misinterpretations and unfounded criticisms in Section I. The next two sections address an argument which is standardly cited as the primary problem confronting the theory: (1) it is committed to the necessary truth of the principle of the identity of indiscernibles; (2) the principle is not necessarily true. It is argued in Section II that (...)
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  16. Adam Caulton (2013). Discerning “Indistinguishable” Quantum Systems. Philosophy of Science 80 (1):49-72.
    In a series of recent papers, Simon Saunders, Fred Muller and Michael Seevinck have collectively argued, against the folklore, that some non-trivial version of Leibniz's principle of the identity of indiscernibles is upheld in quantum mechanics. They argue that all particles---fermions, paraparticles, anyons, even bosons---may be weakly discerned by some physical relation. Here I show that their arguments make illegitimate appeal to non-symmetric, i.e.~permutation-non-invariant, quantities, and that therefore their conclusions do not go through. However, I show that alternative, symmetric quantities (...)
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  17. Fred Chernoff (1981). Leibniz's Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles. Philosophical Quarterly 31 (123):126-138.
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  18. James Van Cleve (2002). Time, Idealism, and the Identity of Indiscernibles. Noûs 36:379 - 393.
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  19. Pablo Cobreros, Paul Egré, David Ripley & Robert van Rooij (2013). Identity, Leibniz's Law and Non-Transitive Reasoning. Metaphysica 14 (2):253-264.
    Arguments based on Leibniz's Law seem to show that there is no room for either indefinite or contingent identity. The arguments seem to prove too much, but their conclusion is hard to resist if we want to keep Leibniz's Law. We present a novel approach to this issue, based on an appropriate modification of the notion of logical consequence.
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  20. Alberto Cortes (1976). Leibniz's Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles: A False Principle. Philosophy of Science 43 (4):491-505.
    In considering the possibility that the fundamental particles of matter might violate Leibniz's Principle, one is confronted with logical proofs that the Principle is a Theorem of Logic. This paper shows that the proof of that theorem is not universal enough to encompass entities that might not be unique, and also strongly suggests that photons, for example, do violate Leibniz's Principle. It also shows that the existence of non-individuals would imply the breakdown of Quine's criterion of ontological commitment.
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  21. Charles B. Cross (2011). Brute Facts, the Necessity of Identity, and the Identity of Indiscernibles. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 92 (1):1-10.
    In ‘Two Spheres, Twenty Spheres, and the Identity of Indiscernibles,’ Della Rocca argues that any counterexample to the PII would involve ‘a brute fact of non-identity [. . .] not grounded in any qualitative difference.’ I respond that Adams's so-called Continuity Argument against the PII does not postulate qualitatively inexplicable brute facts of identity or non-identity if understood in the context of Kripkean modality. One upshot is that if the PII is understood to quantify over modal as well as non-modal (...)
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  22. Charles B. Cross (2009). Causal Independence, the Identity of Indiscernibles, and the Essentiality of Origins. Journal of Philosophy 106 (5):277-291.
    In his well-known 1952 dialogue Max Black describes a counterexample to the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles (PII). The counterexample is a world containing nothing but two purportedly indiscernible iron spheres. Reflecting on Black's example, Robert Adams uses the possibility of a world containing two almost indiscernible spheres to argue for the possibility of the indiscernible spheres world. One of Adams's almost indiscernible spheres has a small impurity, and, Adams writes, "Surely... the absence of the impurity would not make (...)
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  23. Charles B. Cross (1995). Max Black on the Identity of Indiscernibles. Philosophical Quarterly 45 (180):350-360.
    I give a critique of the argument against the Identity of Indiscernibles found in Max Black's dialogue "The Identity of Indiscernibles". I begin by postulating and giving existence and individuation conditions for actually existent thought experiment characters on analogy with fictional characters as postulated in Peter van Inwagen's "Creatures of Fiction". I then show that Black's two-spheres thought experiment raises not one but two discernibility questions: 1) Is it true in the two-spheres thought experiment that there exist two indiscernible spheres? (...)
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  24. Benjamin L. Curtis (2014). The Rumble in the Bundle. Noûs 48 (2):298-313.
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  25. Rafael de Clercq (2012). On Some Putative Graph-Theoretic Counterexamples to the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles. Synthese 187 (2):661-672.
    Recently, several authors have claimed to have found graph-theoretic counterexamples to the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles. In this paper, I argue that their counterexamples presuppose a certain view of what unlabeled graphs are, and that this view is optional at best.
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  26. Sun Demirli (2008). Bundles, Indiscernibility and Triplication Problem. Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 17:33-40.
    The bundle theory, supposed as a theory concerning the internal constitution of individuals, is often conjoined with a constitutional approach to individuation entailing the thesis ‘no two individuals can share all their constituents’ (CIT). But then it runs afoul of Black’s duplication case. Here a new bundle theory, takingdistance relations between bundles to be a sufficient ground for their diversity, will be proposed. This version accommodates Black’s world. Nonetheless, there is a possible objection. Consider the ‘triplication case’—a world containing three (...)
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  27. Joseph Diekemper (2009). Thisness and Events. Journal of Philosophy 106 (5):255-276.
    This essay is an investigation into the existence of a very unusual and some would say unacceptably exotic type of property: namely, the property of being a certain individual; or, if you prefer, the property of being identical to a certain individual. In other words, this essay will investigate whether in spite of their exotic nature there are thisnesses, and, in particular, whether thisnesses are instantiated by events. Of course, I have not really said enough yet about thisnesses to motivate (...)
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  28. Graciela Domenech, Federico Holik & Décio Krause (2008). Q-Spaces and the Foundations of Quantum Mechanics. Foundations of Physics 38 (11):969-994.
    Our aim in this paper is to take quite seriously Heinz Post’s claim that the non-individuality and the indiscernibility of quantum objects should be introduced right at the start, and not made a posteriori by introducing symmetry conditions. Using a different mathematical framework, namely, quasi-set theory, we avoid working within a label-tensor-product-vector-space-formalism, to use Redhead and Teller’s words, and get a more intuitive way of dealing with the formalism of quantum mechanics, although the underlying logic should be modified. We build (...)
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  29. Mauro Dorato & Matteo Morganti (2013). Grades of Individuality. A Pluralistic View of Identity in Quantum Mechanics and in the Sciences. Philosophical Studies 163 (3):591-610.
    This paper offers a critical assessment of the current state of the debate about the identity and individuality of material objects. Its main aim, in particular, is to show that, in a sense to be carefully specified, the opposition between the Leibnizian ‘reductionist’ tradition, based on discernibility, and the sort of ‘primitivism’ that denies that facts of identity and individuality must be analysable has become outdated. In particular, it is argued that—contrary to a widespread consensus—‘naturalised’ metaphysics supports both the acceptability (...)
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  30. Berent Enç (1975). Numerical Identity and Objecthood. Mind 84 (333):10-26.
    There is a category of objects such that for any two occurrences of an object in that category, Establishing the highest degree of their qualitative identity will not be sufficient to establish that the object involved is one and the same. It is first argued that objects in this category occupy positions in a spatio-Temporal continuum and obey certain principles of conservation. And then two criteria for the numerical identity of these objects are developed: (a) that there are scientific laws (...)
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  31. Peter Forrest, The Identity of Indiscernibles. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  32. Malcolm Forster (1991). Preconditions of Predication: From Qualia to Quantum Mechanics. Topoi 10 (1):13-26.
    Although in every inductive inference, an act of invention is requisite, the act soon slips out of notice. Although we bind together facts by superinducing upon them a new Conception, this Conception, once introduced and applied, is looked upon as inseparably connected with the facts, and necessarily implied in them. Having once had the phenomena bound together in their minds in virtue of the Conception men can no longer easily restore them back to the detached and incoherent condition in which (...)
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  33. Thomas R. Foster (1982). Symmetrical Universes and the Identity of Indiscernibles. Philosophy Research Archives 8:169-183.
    The view that numerical difference entails qualitative difference has come under attack from various quarters. One classical attack, advanced by Black, involves possible worlds which are symmetrical. In a symmetrical world, it is claimed, the identity of indiscernibles is false. I argue that such attacks are mistaken, basically because they confuse epistemological issues (such as, how to specify a quality difference) with ontological ones (such as, whether there is such a quality difference). In brief, though there may be some reasons (...)
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  34. Steven French, Identity and Individuality in Quantum Theory. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  35. Steven French (1995). Hacking Away at the Identity of Indiscernibles: Possible Worlds and Einstein's Principle of Equivalence. Journal of Philosophy 92 (9):455-466.
    Purpose:Ultraviolet (UV) corneal cross-linking is an accepted method for the treatment of corneal ecstatic disorders. The authors evaluated whether a rapid treatment protocol (higher intensity and shorter irradiation time) could achieve the same increase in corneal stiffness as the currently-used standard protocol.Methods:Stress-strain measurements were performed on porcine corneal strips. The corneas (n=72) were cut into three strips, each randomly receiving a different treatment: rapid (10 mW/c(2), 9 minutes), standard (3 mW/c(2), 30 minutes) or no irradiation (control, 0 mW/c(2)). After irradiation, (...)
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  36. Steven French (1989). Why the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles is Not Contingently True Either. Synthese 78 (2):141 - 166.
    Faced with strong arguments to the effect that Leibniz''sPrinciple of the Identity of Indiscernibles (PII) is not a necessary truth, many supporters of the Principle have staged a strategic retreat to the claim that it is contingently true in this, the actual, world. The purpose of this paper is to examine the status of the various forms of PII in both classical and quantum physics, and it is concluded that this latter view is at best doubtful, at worst, simply wrong.
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  37. Steven French & Michael Redhead (1988). Quantum Physics and the Identity of Indiscernibles. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 39 (2):233-246.
    Department of History and Philosophy of Science. University of Cambridge, Free School Lane, Cambridge CB2 3RH This paper is concerned with the question of whether atomic particles of the same species, i. e. with the same intrinsic state-independent properties of mass, spin, electric charge, etc, violate the Leibnizian Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles, in the sense that, while there is more than one of them, their state-dependent properties may also all be the same. The answer depends on what exactly (...)
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  38. Richard M. Gale (1973). O'Connor on the Identity of Indiscernibles. Philosophical Studies 24 (6):412 - 415.
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  39. Allen Ginsberg (1981). Quantum Theory and the Identity of Indiscernibles Revisited. Philosophy of Science 48 (3):487-491.
    In this paper I defend the claim that quantum theory, Specifically quantum field theory (qft), Is incompatible with leibniz's principle of the identity of indiscernibles. This is in response to r. Barnette's criticism ("philosophy of science" 45:466-470) of an argument given by alberto cortes ("philosophy of science" 43:491-505) intended to establish this claim. I show that, Using the qft point of view, Cortes' argument can be restated in a way that leaves it immune to barnette's criticism.
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  40. William Godwin (1982). Analysis and the Identity of Indiscernibles. Analysis 42 (2):80 - 82.
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  41. Irwin Goldstein (2004). Neural Materialism, Pain's Badness, and a Posteriori Identities. In Maite Ezcurdia, Robert Stainton & Christopher Viger (eds.), Canadian Journal of Philosophy. University of Calgary Press. 261-273.
    Orthodox neural materialists think mental states are neural events or orthodox material properties of neutral events. Orthodox material properties are defining properties of the “physical”. A “defining property” of the physical is a type of property that provides a necessary condition for something’s being correctly termed “physical”. In this paper I give an argument against orthodox neural materialism. If successful, the argument would show at least some properties of some mental states are not orthodox material properties of neural events. Opposing (...)
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  42. Joshua C. Gregory (1954). Leibniz, the Identity of Indiscernibles, and Probability. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 14 (3):365-369.
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  43. Ian Hacking (1975). The Identity of Indiscernibles. Journal of Philosophy 72 (9):249-256.
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  44. Katherine Hawley (2013). Cut the Pie Any Way You Like? Cotnoir on General Identity. Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 8:323-30.
    This is a short response to Aaron Cotnoir's 'Composition as General Identity', in which I suggest some further applications of his ideas, and try to press the question of why we should think of his 'general identity relation' as a genuine identity relation.
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  45. Katherine Hawley (2009). Identity and Indiscernibility. Mind 118 (469):101 - 119.
    Putative counterexamples to the Principle of Identity of Indiscernibles (PII) are notoriously inconclusive. I establish ground rules for debate in this area, offer a new response to such counterexamples for friends of the PII, but then argue that no response is entirely satisfactory. Finally, I undermine some positive arguments for PII.
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  46. John Hawthorne (1995). The Bundle Theory of Substance and the Identity of Indiscernibles. Analysis 55:191-196.
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  47. Robert C. Hilborn & Candice L. Yuca (2002). Identical Particles in Quantum Mechanics Revisited. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 53 (3):355-389.
    The treatment of identical particles in quantum mechanics rests on two (related) principles: the spin-statistics connection and the Symmetrization Postulate. In light of recent theories (such as q-deformed commutators) that allow for ‘small’ violations of the spin-statistics connection and the Symmetrization Postulate, we revisit the issue of how quantum mechanics deals with identical particles and how it supports or fails to support various philosophical stances concerning individuality. As a consequence of the expanded possibilities for quantum statistics, we argue that permutation (...)
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  48. C. A. Hooker (1975). Remarks on the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles. Southwestern Journal of Philosophy 6 (3):129-153.
    The relationship of the identity of indiscernibles principle to other major metaphysical principles (e.g., relational doctrine of space and time, elimination of singular terms) is discussed, the aim being to outline the necessary requirements of a systematic metaphysics incorporating the former principle. the conclusion is that no adequate systematic metaphysics of this sort is defensible. throughout special attention is paid to modern logical formulation of the principle and to its role in quine's philosophy.
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  49. Don Howard, Are Elementary Particles Individuals? A Critical Appreciation of Steven French and Décio Krause's Identity in Physics: A Historical, Philosophical, and Formal Analysis.
    Steven French and Décio Krause have written what bids fair to be, for years to come, the definitive philosophical treatment of the problem of the individuality of elementary particles in quantum mechanics and quantum field theory. The book begins with a long and dense argument for the view that elementary particles are most helpfully regarded as non-individuals, and it concludes with an earnest attempt to develop a formal apparatus for describing such non-individual entities better suited to the task than our (...)
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  50. Ronald C. Hoy (1984). Inquiry, Intrinsic Properties, and the Identity of Indiscernibles. Synthese 61 (3):275 - 297.
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