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There are no abstract objects

In Theodore Sider, John Hawthorne & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), Contemporary Debates in Metaphysics. Blackwell (2008)

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  1. The Explanatory Role of Propositions.Peter Hanks - 2017 - Analysis 77 (2):370-379.
    © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Analysis Trust. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.comOne of the best arguments in Trenton Merricks’s book Propositions – and there are many excellent arguments to choose from – occurs near the end, where he argues that if it is primitive that propositions represent things as being various ways then we should reject the view that propositions are structured and have constituents. As Merricks shows, combining these (...)
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  • Counting Incompossibles.Peter Fritz & Jeremy Goodman - 2017 - Mind 126 (504):1063–1108.
    We often speak as if there are merely possible people—for example, when we make such claims as that most possible people are never going to be born. Yet most metaphysicians deny that anything is both possibly a person and never born. Since our unreflective talk of merely possible people serves to draw non-trivial distinctions, these metaphysicians owe us some paraphrase by which we can draw those distinctions without committing ourselves to there being merely possible people. We show that such paraphrases (...)
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  • The Argument for Propositions From Modal Validity.Ephraim Glick - 2017 - Analysis 77 (2):359-370.
    © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Analysis Trust. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.comOne of the central goals of Propositions is to argue that propositions exist. My plan for the following is to explore the options for Merricks’s opponents. I’m not sure whether, in the end, they have any entirely satisfactory strategy, but the discussion will still be of some interest. At least I hope to achieve some clarification of the initial (...)
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  • Modal Objectivity1.Justin Clarke‐Doane - 2017 - Noûs 53 (2):266-295.
    It is widely agreed that the intelligibility of modal metaphysics has been vindicated. Quine's arguments to the contrary supposedly confused analyticity with metaphysical necessity, and rigid with non-rigid designators.2 But even if modal metaphysics is intelligible, it could be misconceived. It could be that metaphysical necessity is not absolute necessity – the strictest real notion of necessity – and that no proposition of traditional metaphysical interest is necessary in every real sense. If there were nothing otherwise “uniquely metaphysically significant” about (...)
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  • On Specifying Truth-Conditions.A. Rayo - 2008 - Philosophical Review 117 (3):385-443.
    This essay is a study of ontological commitment, focused on the special case of arithmetical discourse. It tries to get clear about what would be involved in a defense of the claim that arithmetical assertions are ontologically innocent and about why ontological innocence matters. The essay proceeds by questioning traditional assumptions about the connection between the objects that are used to specify the truth-conditions of a sentence, on the one hand, and the objects whose existence is required in order for (...)
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  • Degrees of Being.Kris McDaniel - 2013 - Philosophers' Imprint 13.
    Let us agree that everything that there is exists, and that to be, to be real, and to exist are one and the same. Does everything that there is exist to the same degree? Or do some things exist more than others? Are there gradations of being? I argue that some entities exist more than others. Moreover, many of the notions in play in contemporary metaphysical discourse, such as fundamentality, perfect naturalness, and grounding ought to be cashed out in terms (...)
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  • The Minimal A-Theory.Meghan Sullivan - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 158 (2):149-174.
    Timothy Williamson thinks that every object is a necessary, eternal existent. In defense of his view, Williamson appeals primarily to considerations from modal and tense logic. While I am uncertain about his modal claims, I think there are good metaphysical reasons to believe permanentism: the principle that everything always exists. B-theorists of time and change have long denied that objects change with respect to unqualified existence. But aside from Williamson, nearly all A-theorists defend temporaryism: the principle that there are temporary (...)
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  • Multiple Realization and Expressive Power in Mathematics and Ethics.David Liggins - 2016 - In Uri D. Leibowitz & Neil Sinclair (eds.), Explanation in Ethics and Mathematics: Debunking and Dispensability. Oxford University Press.
    According to a popular ‘explanationist’ argument for moral or mathematical realism the best explanation of some phenomena are moral or mathematical, and this implies the relevant form of realism. One popular way to resist the premiss of such arguments is to hold that any supposed explanation provided by moral or mathematical properties is in fact provided only by the non-moral or non-mathematical grounds of those properties. Many realists have responded to this objection by urging that the explanations provided by the (...)
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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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  • Composition.Daniel Z. Korman & Chad Carmichael - 2016 - Oxford Handbooks Online.
    When some objects are the parts of another object, they compose that object and that object is composite. This article is intended as an introduction to the central questions about composition and a highly selective overview of various answers to those questions. In §1, we review some formal features of parthood that are important for understanding the nature of composition. In §2, we consider some answers to the question: which pluralities of objects together compose something? As we will see, the (...)
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  • A Conditional Theory of Trying.David-Hillel Ruben - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (1):271-287.
    What I shall do in this paper is to propose an analysis of ‘Agent P tries to A’ in terms of a subjunctive conditional, that avoids some of the problems that beset most alternative accounts of trying, which I call ‘referential views’. They are so-named because on these alternative accounts, ‘P tries to A’ entails that there is a trying to A by P, and therefore the expression ‘P’s trying to A’ can occur in the subject of a sentence and (...)
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  • Dorr on the Language of Ontology.Chris Daly & David Liggins - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (12):3301-3315.
    In the ‘ordinary business of life’, everyone makes claims about what there is. For instance, we say things like: ‘There are some beautiful chairs in my favourite furniture shop’. Within the context of philosophical debate, some philosophers also make claims about what there is. For instance, some ontologists claim that there are chairs; other ontologists claim that there are no chairs. What is the relation between ontologists’ philosophical claims about what there is and ordinary claims about what there is? According (...)
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  • On Parfit’s Ontology.Kian Mintz-Woo - 2017 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 48 (5):707-725.
    Parfit denies that the introduction of reasons into our ontology is costly for his theory. He puts forth two positions to help establish the claim: the Plural Senses View and the Argument from Empty Ontology. I argue that, first, the Plural Senses View for ‘exists’ can be expanded to allow for senses which undermine his ontological claims; second, the Argument from Empty Ontology can be debunked by Platonists. Furthermore, it is difficult to make statements about reasons true unless these statements (...)
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  • Brute Necessity.James Van Cleve - 2018 - Philosophy Compass 13 (9):e12516.
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  • Persistence, Vagueness, and Location.Antony Eagle - 2016 - Journal of Philosophy 113 (10):507-532.
    This article discusses two arguments in favor of perdurance. The first is Sider’s argument from vagueness, “one of the most powerful” in favor of perdurantism. I make the observation that endurantists have principled grounds to claim that the argument is unsound, at least if endurance is formulated in locative rather than mereological terms. Having made this observation, I use it to emphasize a somewhat neglected difference between endurantists and perdurantists with respect to their views on material objects. These views, in (...)
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  • Why so Serious? Non-Serious Presentism and the Problem of Cross-Temporal Relations.Ross Inman - 2012 - Metaphysica 13 (1):55-63.
    It is a common assumption in the metaphysics of time that a commitment to presentism entails a commitment to serious presentism, the view that objects can exemplify properties or stand in relations only at times at which they exist. As a result, non-serious presentism is widely thought to be beyond the bounds for the card-carrying presentist in response to the problem of cross-temporal relations. In this paper, I challenge this general consensus by examining one common argument in favor of the (...)
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  • Replies. [REVIEW]Stephen Schiffer - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (1):233-243.
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  • Replies. [REVIEW]Stephen Schiffer - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (1):233–243.
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  • Sums and Grounding.Noël B. Saenz - 2018 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 96 (1):102-117.
    As I will use the term, an object is a mereological sum of some things just in case those things compose it simply in virtue of existing. In the first half of this paper, I argue that there are no sums. The key premise for this conclusion relies on a constraint on what, in certain cases, it takes for something to ground, or metaphysically explain, something else. In the second half, I argue that in light of my argument against sums, (...)
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  • Counterpossibles.Timothy Williamson - 2018 - Topoi 37 (3):357-368.
    The paper clarifies and defends the orthodox view that counterfactual conditionals with impossible antecedents are vacuously true against recent criticisms. It argues that apparent counterexamples to orthodoxy result from uncritical reliance on a fallible heuristic used in the processing of conditionals. A comparison is developed between such counterpossibles and vacuously true universal generalizations.
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  • Multiple Location Defended.Antony Eagle - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (8):2215-2231.
    The notion of multiple location plays an important role in the characterization of endurantism. Several authors have recently offered cases intended to demonstrate the incoherence of multiple location. I argue that these cases do not succeed in making multiple location problematic. Along the way, several crucial issues about multiple location and its use by endurantists are clarified.
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  • Going Beyond the Fundamental: Feminism in Contemporary Metaphysics.Elizabeth Barnes - 2014 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 114 (3pt3):335-351.
    Much recent literature in metaphysics attempts to answer the question, ‘What is metaphysics?’ In this paper I argue that many of the most influential contemporary answers to this question yield the result that feminist metaphysics is not metaphysics. I further argue this result is problematic.
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  • Optimus Prime: Paraphrasing Prime Number Talk.Jonathan Tallant - 2013 - Synthese 190 (12):2065-2083.
    Baker (Mind 114:223–238, 2005; Brit J Philos Sci 60:611–633, 2009) has recently defended what he calls the “enhanced” version of the indispensability argument for mathematical Platonism. In this paper I demonstrate that the nominalist can respond to Baker’s argument. First, I outline Baker’s argument in more detail before providing a nominalistically acceptable paraphrase of prime-number talk. Second, I argue that, for the nominalist, mathematical language is used to express physical facts about the world. In endorsing this line I follow moves (...)
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