Persistence

Edited by A. P. Taylor (North Dakota State University)
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Summary What is it for an object to persist over an interval of time? How is persistence achieved? Do objects exist through changes in their intrinsic properties or do such changes cause the object to go out of existence only to be replaced by another more or less similar object? The theory of persistence tries to give principled answers to the these questions, drawing on theoretical physics, philosophical intuition and argumentation, and careful reflection on the phenomenology of objects. The most popular answers to these questions are represented by a pair of competing theories: endurantism, the view according to which objects endure, or "sweep," through time taking all their three-dimensional parts with them; and perdurantism, the view according to which objects are composites or "worms" of temporal parts existing in a four-dimensional spacetime manifold.   A third important theory is the "stage" theory favored by some perdurantists, on this view objects are, strictly speaking, identical with momentary temporal parts or "stages" in a four-dimensional spacetime manifold and to say they persist is merely a facon de parle.  
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  1. Comet Tails, Fleeting Objects and Temporal Inversions.Liliana Albertazzi - 1996 - Axiomathes 7 (1-2):111-135.
  2. Identity Through Time.David Armstrong - 1980 - In Peter van Inwagen (ed.), Time and Cause: Essays Presented to Richard Taylor. Reidel. pp. 67-78.
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  3. Causation and Persistence.Jerrold L. Aronson - 2003 - International Studies in Philosophy 35 (4):237-239.
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  4. Structural Powers and the Homeodynamic Unity of Organisms.Christopher J. Austin & Anna Marmodoro - 2017 - In William M. R. Simpson, Robert C. Koons & Nicholas J. Teh (eds.), Neo-Aristotelian Perspectives on Contemporary Science. Routledge. pp. 169-184.
    Although they are continually compositionally reconstituted and reconfigured, organisms nonetheless persist as ontologically unified beings over time – but in virtue of what? A common answer is: in virtue of their continued possession of the capacity for morphological invariance which persists through, and in spite of, their mereological alteration. While we acknowledge that organisms‟ capacity for the “stability of form” – homeostasis - is an important aspect of their diachronic unity, we argue that this capacity is derived from, and grounded (...)
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  5. Occasional Identity or Occasional Reference?H. E. Baber - unknown
    André Gallois argues that individuals that undergo fission are on some occasions identical, but on others distinct. Occasional identity however, is metaphysically costly. I argue that we can get all the benefits of occasional identity without the metaphysical costs. On the proposed account, the names of ordinary material objects refer indeterminately to stages that belong to reference classes determined by the context of utterance or temporal adverbs. In addition, temporal markers indicating the perspective from which we count objects and assign (...)
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  6. Ex Ante Desire and Post Hoc Satisfaction.Harriett Baber - 2010 - In Joseph Keim Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & Harry Silverstein (eds.), Time and Identity. MIT Press. pp. 249--267.
    This chapter discusses desire theory and how the temporal gap between desires and the states of affairs that satisfy them affects this theory. Satisfaction is not that important in desire theory because even if getting what we want fails to satisfy, we are better off for having got it. The rationale for rejecting hedonistic accounts of well-being in favor of desire theories is the intuition that states of affairs that are not “like” anything for us can harm and benefit us. (...)
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  7. Restricted Diachronic Composition, Immanent Causality, and Objecthood: A Reply to Hudson.Yuri Balashov - 2003 - Philosophical Papers 32 (1):23-30.
    Composition, persistence, vagueness, and more constitute an interconnected network of problems. My criticism of Hud Hudson's provocative claims made in a recent paper (Hudson 2002) was focused almost exclusively on the issue of diachronic composition (Balashov 2003). Hudson's response (2003) has highlighted the dangers of such isolationism. But I want to hold to my strategy to the end. Part of the reason is to evade the appalling responsibility of presenting a full-blown theory of all the above phenomena; I must confess (...)
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  8. Paradoxes of Multi-Location.S. Barker & P. Dowe - 2003 - Analysis 63 (2):106-114.
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  9. Non-Paradoxical Multi-Location.H. Beebee & M. Rush - 2003 - Analysis 63 (4):311-317.
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  10. Non-Paradoxical Multi-Location.Helen Beebee & Michael Rush - 2003 - Analysis 63 (4):311–317.
  11. God, Time and Eternity.Steve Bishop - 2004 - Quodlibet 6.
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  12. Bringing Back Intrinsics to Enduring Things.Andrea C. Bottani - forthcoming - Synthese:1-22.
    According to David Lewis, the argument from temporary intrinsics is ‘the principal and decisive objection against endurance’. I focus on eternalist endurantism, discussing three different ways the eternalist endurantist can try to avoid treating temporary intrinsics as relational. Two of them, generally known as ‘adverbialism’ and ‘SOFism’, are familiar and controversial. I scrutinize them and argue that Lewis’ scepticism about them is well founded. Then, I sketch a further, to some extent new, version of eternalist endurantism, where the key idea (...)
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  13. All Time Preferences?Krister Bykvist - 1999 - Theoria 65 (1):36-54.
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  14. Time and Identity.Joseph Keim Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & Harry S. Silverstein (eds.) - 2010 - Bradford.
    The concepts of time and identity seem at once unproblematic and frustratingly difficult. Time is an intricate part of our experience -- it would seem that the passage of time is a prerequisite for having any experience at all -- and yet recalcitrant questions about time remain. Is time real? Does time flow? Do past and future moments exist? Philosophers face similarly stubborn questions about identity, particularly about the persistence of identical entities through change. Indeed, questions about the metaphysics of (...)
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  15. Cardinality and Identity.Massimiliano Carrara & Elisabetta Sacchi - 2007 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 36 (5):539-556.
    P.T. Geach has maintained (see, e.g., Geach (1967/1968)) that identity (as well as dissimilarity) is always relative to a general term. According to him, the notion of absolute identity has to be abandoned and replaced by a multiplicity of relative identity relations for which Leibniz's Law - which says that if two objects are identical they have the same properties - does not hold. For Geach relative identity is at least as good as Frege's cardinality thesis which he takes to (...)
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  16. Tracking Referents in Electronic Health Records.Werner Ceusters & Barry Smith - 2005 - Studies in Health Technology and Informatics 116:71–76.
    Electronic Health Records (EHRs) are organized around two kinds of statements: those reporting observations made, and those reporting acts performed. In neither case does the record involve any direct reference to what such statements are actually about. They record not: what is happening on the side of the patient, but rather: what is said about what is happening. While the need for a unique patient identifier is generally recognized, we argue that we should now move to an EHR regime in (...)
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  17. Endurance and Non-Endurance: From the Perspective of Virtue Ethics. [REVIEW]Shaoming Chen - 2008 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 3 (3):335-351.
    By analysing the two relevant psychological phenomena of “endurance” and “non-endurance,” this essay aims to reveal the ethical implications of a Confucian approach, namely regarding non-endurance as an impulse of primary virtue. Based on this case study, the author then explores the significance of moral cultivation or psychological training in establishing moral personality and the complexities of such a process. Meanwhile, “love” in Confucian ethics means sympathy for the inferior rather than affection for the revered. Hopefully, this study may deepen (...)
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  18. Time and Division.Barry F. Dainton - 1992 - Ratio 5 (2):102-128.
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  19. Human Persistence Through Time.Peter C. Dalton - 1977 - New Scholasticism 51 (2):162-181.
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  20. Wholly Otherwise1.Saitya Brata Das - 2008 - Journal for Cultural Research 12 (2):167-180.
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  21. Low-Grade Two-Dimensionalism.Josh Dever - 2007 - Philosophical Books 48 (1):1-16.
    As tends to be the way with philosophical positions, there are at least as many two-dimensionalisms as there are two-dimensionalists. But painting with a broad brush, there are core epistemological and metaphysical commitments which underlie the two-dimensionalist project, commitments for which I have no sympathies. A sketch of three signi?cant points of disagreement.
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  22. Abortion, Some Slippery Slope Arguments and Identity Over Time.Clement Dore - 1989 - Philosophical Studies 55 (3):279 - 291.
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  23. Die Idee der Verwandlung.Andreas Dorschel - 2007 - In Verwandlungsmusik. Über komponierte Transfigurationen. Universal Edition. pp. 11-51.
    Within the European history of ideas, at least three conceptions of metamorphosis can be distinguished. First, as celebrated in Ovid’s Metamorphoses, there is the vision of an open-ended flux of shapes in all directions, potentially with the ambiguous result of wavering identity. Secondly, at the centre of the synoptic gospels Jesus’s transfiguration is presented as a luminous elevation, rendering his true nature unambiguous. Thirdly, alchemy conceives of metamorphosis as contingent upon a meeting of polarities. The distinction is fit to disclose (...)
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  24. Particular Reidentification.Fred I. Dretske - 1964 - Philosophy of Science 31 (2):133-142.
    A certain dilemma is inherent in relational accounts of space and time. If any objects endure through change, then temporal elements other than relations are required to describe them. If, on the other hand, no objects endure through change, no permanent reference system is available in terms of which to define the "same place" at different times. An argument which, by exploiting this latter difficulty, attempts to show that "objects with some endurance through time" must be accepted as fundamental is (...)
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  25. How Things Persist.William Edgar - 2003 - Review of Metaphysics 57 (2):410-412.
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  26. Counterfactual Theories, Preemption, and Persistence.Douglas Ehring - 2004 - In Phil Dowe & Paul Noordhof (eds.), Cause and Chance: Causation in an Indeterministic World. Routledge.
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  27. Motion, Causation, and the Causal Theory of Identity.Douglas Ehring - 1991 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 69 (2):180 – 194.
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  28. Destruction, Alteration, Simples and World Stuff.Crawford L. Elder - 2003 - Philosophical Quarterly 53 (210):24–38.
    When a tree is chopped to bits, or a sweater unravelled, its matter still exists. Since antiquity, it has sometimes been inferred that nothing really has been destroyed: what has happened is just that this matter has assumed new form. Contemporary versions hold that apparent destruction of a familiar object is just rearrangement of microparticles or of 'physical simples' or 'world stuff'. But if destruction of a familiar object is genuinely to be reduced to mere alteration of something else, we (...)
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  29. Identity Through Change and Substitutivity Salva Veritate.Ray Elugardo & Rob Stainton - 2010 - In Joseph Keim Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & Harry Silverstein (eds.), Time and Identity. MIT Press.
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  30. Possibility Relative to a Sortal.Delia Graff Fara - 2012 - In Karen Bennett & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), Oxford Studies in Metaphysics, volume 7. Oxford University Press. pp. 1.
    This paper is an informal presentation of the ideas presented formally in ”Relative-Sameness Counterpart Theory”. Relative-sameness relations -- such as being the same person as -- are like David Lewis’s “counterpart” relations in the following respects: (i) they may hold over time or across worlds between objects that aren’t cross-time or cross-world identical (I propose), and (ii) there are a multiplicity of them, different ones of which may be variously invoked in different contexts. They differ from his counterpart relations, however, (...)
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  31. In Defense of Three-Dimensionalism.Kit Fine - 2006 - Journal of Philosophy 103 (12):699-714.
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  32. Identity Over Time: Objectively, Subjectively.Bas C. Fraassen & Isabelle Peschard - 2008 - Philosophical Quarterly 58 (230):15-35.
    In the philosophy of science, identity over time emerges as a central concern both as an ontological category in the interpretation of physical theories, and as an epistemological problem concerning the conditions of possibility of knowledge. In Reichenbach and subsequent writers on the problem of indistinguishable quantum particles we see the return of a contrast between Leibniz and Aquinas on the subject of individuation. The possibility of rejecting the principle of the identity of indiscernibles has certain logical difficulties, leading us (...)
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  33. Occasional Identity: Thereby Hangs the Tale.André Gallois - 2011 - Analytic Philosophy 52 (3):188-202.
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  34. The UK Challenge to Europeanization: The Persistence of British Euroscepticism.Mark Garnett - 2016 - The European Legacy 21 (8):856-857.
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  35. Noonan, 'Best Candidate' Theories and the Ship of Theseus.B. J. Garrett - 1985 - Analysis 45 (4):212 - 215.
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  36. Teoria części czasowych – tezy i argumentacje.Mariusz Grygianiec - 2009 - Filozofia Nauki 17 (4).
    In the paper the most popular arguments in favour of the doctrine of temporal parts are presented and analysed. The author discusses the following arguments: (i) from analogy; (ii) from ontological parsimony; (iii) from intrinsic change; (iv) from mereological change; (v) against presentism; (vi) from time travel; (vii) from vagueness; (viii) from coincidence. The main aim of the paper is to show - in the light of examined arguments - that the 3D-ism/4D-ism equivalence thesis might be treated as a well-founded (...)
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  37. Persistence Through Time.Sally Haslanger - 2003 - In Michael J. Loux & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Metaphysics. Oxford University Press. pp. 315--354.
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  38. Persistence: Contemporary Readings.Sally Haslanger & Roxanne Marie Kurtz (eds.) - 2006 - Bradford.
    How does an object persist through change? How can a book, for example, open in the morning and shut in the afternoon, persist through a change that involves the incompatible properties of being open and being shut? The goal of this reader is to inform and reframe the philosophical debate around persistence; it presents influential accounts of the problem that range from classic papers by W. V. O. Quine, David Lewis, and Judith Jarvis Thomson to recent work by contemporary philosophers. (...)
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  39. Personal Identity and Concern for the Future.David Haugen - 1995 - Philosophia 24 (3-4):481-492.
    Parfit's reductionist theory of personal identity states that a person's persistence through time is just a matter of psychological continuity and connectedness. He uses this theory to argue against the requirement of equal concern: the view that a rational person should be equally concerned about all parts of her future. The argument is that since psychological connectedness is one of grounds of a person's concern for her future and since connectedness is weaker over longer periods, it follows that a person (...)
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  40. Fission, Fusion and Intrinsic Facts.Katherine Hawley - 2005 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 71 (3):602-621.
    Closest-continuer or best-candidate accounts of persistence seem deeply unsatisfactory, but it’s hard to say why. The standard criticism is that such accounts violate the ‘only a and b’ rule, but this criticism merely highlights a feature of the accounts without explaining why the feature is unacceptable. Another concern is that such accounts violate some principle about the supervenience of persistence facts upon local or intrinsic facts. But, again, we do not seem to have an independent justification for this supervenience claim. (...)
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  41. Temporal Overlap is Not Coincidence.Mark Heller - 2000 - The Monist 83 (3):362-380.
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  42. The Best Candidate Approach to Diachronic Identity.Mark Heller - 1987 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 65 (4):434 – 451.
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  43. Occurrents.Boris Hennig - 2008 - In Katherine Munn & Barry Smith (eds.), Applied Ontology. An Introduction. Ontos Verlag.
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  44. Becoming and Persons.Ronald C. Hoy - 1978 - Philosophical Studies 34 (3):269 - 280.
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  45. Temporally Incongruent Counterparts.Hud Hudson - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (2):337 - 343.
    Despite its first page this paper is not yet another piece on Kant! Rather, the paper is a contribution to the literature on incongruent counterparts. Specifically, it concerns the question of whether we can construct a temporal version of the puzzle of incongruent counterparts--a question which (as far as I can tell) has been thoroughly neglected. I maintain that we can construct such a version of the puzzle, and that this temporal variant on the phenomenon has something to teach us (...)
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  46. Immanent Causality and Diachronic Composition: A Reply to Balashov.Hud Hudson - 2003 - Philosophical Papers 32 (1):15-22.
    Philosophical Papers Vol.32(1) 2003: 15-22.
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  47. Time, Persistence, and Causality: Towards a Dynamic View of Temporal Reality.Rognvaldur Ingthorsson - 2002 - Dissertation, Umeå University
    The thesis revolves around the following questions. What is time? Is time tensed or tenseless? Do things endure or perdure, i.e. do things persist by being wholly present at many times, or do they persist by having temporal parts? Do causes bring their effects into existence, or are they only correlated with each other? Within a realist approach to metaphysics, the author claims that the tensed view of time, the endurance view of persistence, and the production view of causality naturally (...)
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  48. Me, Again.Jenann Ismael - 2010 - In Joseph Keim Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & Harry Silverstein (eds.), Time and Identity. MIT Press.
    Thought about the self raises some very special problems. Some of these concern indexical reference quite generally, but there is one having to do with identity over time that seems to be unique to the self. I use an historical exchange between Anscombe and Descartes to bring out the problem, and propose a resolution that casts light both on why self-directed thought presents a unique epistemic predicament and where Descartes’ cogito may have gone wrong.
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  49. How Things Persist.Dale Jacquette - 2002 - International Philosophical Quarterly 42 (4):551-554.
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  50. The Ship of Theseus.Ludger Jansen - 2011 - In Michael Bruce & Steven Barbone (eds.), Just the Arguments: 100 of the Most Important Arguments in Western Philosophy. Wiley-Blackwell.
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