David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 15 (1):79-89 (2012)
In this paper I discuss a central objection against diseases being natural kinds—namely, that diseases are processes or transitions and hence they should not be conceptualized in the ‘substantish’ framework of natural kinds. I indicate that the objection hinges on conceiving disease kinds as phase kinds, in contrast to the non-phase, natural kinds of the exact sciences. I focus on somatic diseases and argue, via a representative comparison, that if disease kinds are phase kinds, then exact science kinds are phase kinds as well. On the other hand, if exact science kinds are non-phase kinds, then disease kinds are non-phase kinds as well. This objection should thus be rejected, under a certain caveat, though. If natural kind membership has an influence over the diachronic identity of kind members, then it is possible, in principle, to draw the phase/non-phase distinction such that an ‘ontological gap’ lies between medical kinds and exact science kinds. I show further that this caveat is unavoidable even in relation to substantive universals and ‘essential’ properties—two controversial, strong features that were traditionally associated to natural kinds.
|Keywords||Natural kinds Processes Medical kinds Phase kinds Phases Substantial changes Jonathan Lowe|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
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
Richard Boyd (1999). Homeostasis, Species, and Higher Taxa. In R. A. Wilson (ed.), Species: New Interdisciplinary Essays. Mit Press. 141-85.
Rachel Cooper, Classifying Madness: A Philosophical Examination of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
Judith Crane (2003). Locke's Theory of Classification. British Journal for the History of Philosophy 11 (2):249 – 259.
Robert D.'Amico (1995). Is Disease a Natural Kind? Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 20 (5):551-569.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Stefan Dragulinescu (2010). Diseases as Natural Kinds. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 31 (5):347-369.
Neil E. Williams (2011). Arthritis and Nature's Joints. In Michael O'Rourke, Joseph Keim Campbell & Matthew H. Slater (eds.), Carving Nature at its Joints. Mit Press.
Thomas Reydon (2009). How to Fix Kind Membership: A Problem for Hpc Theory and a Solution. Philosophy of Science 76 (5):724-736.
Daniel P. Sulmasy (2005). “Diseases and Natural Kinds”. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 26 (6):487-513.
Muhammad Ali Khalidi (2013). Three Kinds of Social Kinds. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 89 (3).
Rachel Cooper (2004). Why Hacking is Wrong About Human Kinds. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 55 (1):73-85.
Marzia Soavi (2009). Antirealism and Artefact Kinds. Techne 13 (2):93-107.
Ingo Brigandt (2009). Natural Kinds in Evolution and Systematics: Metaphysical and Epistemological Considerations. Acta Biotheoretica 57:77-97.
John S. Wilkins (forthcoming). Biological Essentialism and the Tidal Change of Natural Kinds. Science and Education.
Thomas A. C. Reydon (2009). Do the Life Sciences Need Natural Kinds? Croatian Journal of Philosophy 9 (2):167-190.
Ronald De Sousa (1984). The Natural Shiftiness of Natural Kinds. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 14 (4):561 - 580.
Nick Haslam (2002). Kinds of Kinds: A Conceptual Taxonomy of Psychiatric Categories. Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 9 (3):203-217.
G. McOuat (2001). From Cutting Nature at its Joints to Measuring It: New Kinds and New Kinds of People in Biology. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 32 (4):613-645.
Added to index2012-01-17
Total downloads17 ( #101,697 of 1,099,909 )
Recent downloads (6 months)6 ( #51,330 of 1,099,909 )
How can I increase my downloads?