In Defence of Powerful Qualities

Metaphysica 14 (1):93-107 (2013)
Abstract
The ontology of ‘powerful qualities’ is gaining an increasing amount of attention in the literature on properties. This is the view that the so-called categorical or qualitative properties are identical with ‘dispositional’ properties. The position is associated with C.B. Martin, John Heil, Galen Strawson and Jonathan Jacobs. Robert Schroer ( 2012 ) has recently mounted a number of criticisms against the powerful qualities view as conceived by these main adherents, and has also advanced his own (radically different) version of the view. In this paper I have three main aims: firstly, I shall defend the ontology from his critique, arguing that his criticisms do not damage the position. Secondly, I shall argue that Schroer’s own version of the view is untenable. Thirdly, the paper shall serve to clear up some conceptual confusions that often bedevil the powerful qualities view
Keywords Powerful qualities  Categorical properties  Dispositional properties  Partial consideration  Phenomenal consciousness
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Robert Schroer (2010). How Far Can the Physical Sciences Reach? American Philosophical Quarterlly 47 (3):253-266.
Andreas Hüttemann (2009). Dispositions in Physics. In Gregor Damschen, Robert Schnepf & Karsten Stueber (eds.), Debating Dispositions. De Gruyter.
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