David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Synthese 164 (2):161 - 184 (2008)
There is an interesting parallel between two debates in different domains of contemporary analytic philosophy. One is the endurantism–<span class='Hi'>perdurantism</span>, or three-dimensionalism vs. four-dimensionalism, debate in analytic metaphysics. The other is the debate on the species problem in philosophy of biology. In this paper I attempt to cross-fertilize these debates with the aim of exploiting some of the potential that the two debates have to advance each other. I address two issues. First, I explore what the case of species implies regarding the feasibility of particular positions in the endurantism– <span class='Hi'>perdurantism</span> debate. I argue that the case of species casts doubt on the recent claim that three-dimensionalism and four-dimensionalism are equivalent descriptions of the same underlying reality. Second, and conversely, I examine whether the metaphysical worry about three-dimensionalism and four-dimensionalism can help us to better understand the nature of biological species. I show that analyzing the thesis that species are individuals against the background of the endurantism–<span class='Hi'>perdurantism</span> debate allows us to explicate two different ways in which this thesis can be interpreted.
|Keywords||Endurantism Four-dimensionalism Perdurantism Species-are-individuals thesis Species problem Three-dimensionalism|
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References found in this work BETA
Yuri Balashov (2000). Enduring and Perduring Objects in Minkowski Space-Time. Philosophical Studies 99 (2):129-166.
Yuri Balashov (2000). Persistence and Space-Time. The Monist 83 (3):321-340.
Berit Brogaard (2000). Presentist Four-Dimensionalism. The Monist 83 (3):341-356.
Berit Brogaard (2004). Species as Individuals. Biology and Philosophy 19 (2):223-242.
Jeremy Butterfield (2005). On the Persistence of Particles. Foundations of Physics 35 (2):233-269.
Citations of this work BETA
Thomas A. C. Reydon (2009). Gene Names as Proper Names of Individuals: An Assessment. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60 (2):409-432.
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