Against zero-dimensional material objects (and other bare particulars)

Philosophical Studies 160 (2):305-321 (2012)
A modus tollens against zero-dimensional material objects is presented from the premises (i) that if there are zero-dimensional material objects then there are bare particulars, and (ii) that there are no bare particulars. The argument for the first premise proceeds by elimination. First, bare particular theory and bundle theory are motivated as the most appealing theories of property exemplification. It is then argued that the bundle theorist’s Ockhamism ought to lead her to reject spatiotemporally located zero-dimensional property instances. Finally, it is argued that since she must accept such instances if she accepts zero-dimensional material object bundles, she ought to avoid the latter. This leaves bare particular theory as the default view of zero-dimensional material objects. The argument for the second premise invokes the thesis that the exemplification of at least one sparse property is a prerequisite for the existence of any particular. It is argued from Humean considerations that bare particulars fail this prerequisite.
Keywords Material objects  Zero-dimensional objects  Bare particulars  Bundle theory  Recombination
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DOI 10.1007/s11098-011-9720-7
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References found in this work BETA
David Lewis (1983). New Work for a Theory of Universals. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 61 (December):343-377.

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Daniel Giberman (2014). Tropes in Space. Philosophical Studies 167 (2):453-472.

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