David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophical Studies 147 (2):193 - 211 (2010)
I defend the view that ordinary objects like statues are identical to the pieces of matter from which they are made. I argue that ordinary speakers assert sentences such as ‘this statue is a molded piece of clay’. This suggests that speakers believe propositions which entail that ordinary objects such as statues are the pieces matter from which they are made, and therefore pluralism contradicts ordinary beliefs. The dominant response to this argument purports to find an ambiguity in the word ‘is’, such that ‘is’ in these sentences means the same as ‘constitutes or is constituted by’. I will use standard tests for ambiguity to argue that this strategy fails. I then explore and reject other responses to the argument.
|Keywords||Metaphysics Problems of constitution ‘Is’ of constitution Tests for ambiguity|
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References found in this work BETA
Michael B. Burke (ed.) (1997). Material Constitution: A Reader. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
Delia Graff Fara (2001). Descriptions as Predicates. Philosophical Studies 102:1--42.
Kit Fine (2003). The Non-Identity of a Material Thing and its Matter. Mind 112 (446):195-234.
André Gallois (1998). Occasions of Identity: A Study in the Metaphysics of Persistence, Change, and Sameness. Oxford University Press.
H. P. Grice (1989). Studies in the Way of Words. Harvard University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Daniel Z. Korman (2013). Fundamental Quantification and the Language of the Ontology Room. Noûs 49 (1).
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