Dreyfus and Spinosa on things-in-themselves

Inquiry 42 (1):115 – 124 (1999)
Abstract
It is questioned whether Dreyfus and Spinosa's essay faces the real issue of things-inthemselves. The importance of distinguishing three interconnected problems deserving to come under Dreyfus and Spinosa's title, 'Coping with Things-in-themselves', is stressed. These are (1) What is the real nature of the world in the midst of which we, whatever we really are, exist?; (2) Can the properties of things (or even of types of things) be distinguished into two types, those which belong to them necessarily (with a de re necessity) and those which belong to them only contingently?; and (3) Which are the properties of things to which reference would have to be made in an ideally correct formulation of the laws which govern change as opposed to descriptions of their results in particular actual circumstances?
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