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Mereology and ideology

Synthese 198 (8):7431-7448 (2020)

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  1. How to minimize ontological commitments: a grounding-reductive approach.Reuben Sass - 2022 - Synthese 200 (4):1-22.
    Some revisionary ontologies are highly parsimonious: they posit far fewer entities than what we quantify over in ordinary discourse. The most radical examples are minimal ontologies, on which physical simples are the only things that exist. Highly parsimonious ontologies, and especially minimal ones, face the challenge of either accounting for the truth of our ordinary quantificational discourse, or paraphrasing such discourse away. Common strategies for addressing this challenge include classical reduction, paraphrase nihilism, and a distinction between ontological and existence commitments. (...)
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  • Irreducibly collective existence and bottomless nihilism.Jonas Werner - 2022 - Synthese 200 (2):1-16.
    This paper develops the metaphysical hypothesis that there are irreducibly collective pluralities, pluralities of objects that do not have a singular object among them. A way to formulate this hypothesis using plural quantification will be proposed and the coherence of irreducibly collective existence will be defended. Furthermore, irreducibly collective existence will be shown to allow for bottomless scenarios that do not involve things standing in relations of parthood. This will create logical space for an anti-atomistic form of mereological nihilism.
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  • Ideological innocence.Daniel Rubio - 2022 - Synthese 200 (5):1-22.
    Quine taught us the difference between a theory’s ontology and its ideology. Ontology is the things a theory’s quantifiers must range over if it is true, Ideology is the primitive concepts that must be used to state the theory. This allows us to split the theoretical virtue of parsimony into two kinds: ontological parsimony and ideological parsimony. My goal is help illuminate the virtue of ideological parsimony by giving a criterion for ideological innocence—a rule for when additional ideology does not (...)
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  • Sense Perception and Mereological Nihilism.Andrew Brenner - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly.
    In the debate over the existence of composite objects, it is sometimes suggested that perceptual evidence justifies belief in composite objects. But it is almost never suggested that we are perceptually justified in believing in composite objects on the basis of the fact that the phenomenology of our perceptual experiences enables us to discriminate between situations where there are composite objects and situations where there are merely simples arranged composite object-wise. But while the thought that the phenomenology of our perceptual (...)
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  • Why Composition Matters.Andrew M. Bailey & Andrew Brenner - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (8):934-949.
    Many say that ontological disputes are defective because they are unimportant or without substance. In this paper, we defend ontological disputes from the charge, with a special focus on disputes over the existence of composite objects. Disputes over the existence of composite objects, we argue, have a number of substantive implications across a variety of topics in metaphysics, science, philosophical theology, philosophy of mind, and ethics. Since the disputes over the existence of composite objects have these substantive implications, they are (...)
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  • Ordinary objects.Daniel Z. Korman - 2011 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    An encyclopedia entry which covers various revisionary conceptions of which macroscopic objects there are, and the puzzles and arguments that motivate these conceptions: sorites arguments, the argument from vagueness, the puzzles of material constitution, arguments against indeterminate identity, arguments from arbitrariness, debunking arguments, the overdetermination argument, and the problem of the many.
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