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Michael Gorman (2005). The Essential and the Accidental.

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  1.  68
    On How (Not) to Define Modality in Terms of Essence.Robert Michels - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-19.
    In his influential article ‘Essence and Modality’, Fine proposes a definition of necessity in terms of the primitive essentialist notion ‘true in virtue of the nature of’. Fine’s proposal is suggestive, but it admits of different interpretations, leaving it unsettled what the precise formulation of an Essentialist definition of necessity should be. In this paper, four different versions of the definition are discussed: a singular, a plural reading, and an existential variant of Fine’s original suggestion and an alternative version proposed (...)
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  2.  39
    Essence and Logical Properties.Hashem Morvarid - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
    Since Kit Fine presented his counter-examples to the standard versions of the modal view, many have been convinced that the standard versions of the modal view are not adequate. However, the scope of Fine's argument has not been fully appreciated. In this paper, I aim to carry Fine’s argument to its logical conclusion and argue that once we embrace the intuition underlying his counter-examples, we have to hold that properties obtained, totally or partially, by application of logical operations are not (...)
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  3.  36
    Essence and Mere Necessity.Jessica Leech - 2018 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 82:309-332.
  4.  39
    Is There Such a Thing as Relative Analyticity?Kai Michael Büttner - 2017 - Ratio 30 (1):47-56.
    Fine bases his influential conception of essence on a particular account of definitions. And he complements it with a specific account of analyticity. I will argue that Fine's conception of relative analyticity confuses the idea of a sentence's being true in virtue of a term's definition with the idea of a sentence's being true in virtue of a term's meaning. His idea that correct definitions specify essential properties of meanings is mistaken. The correctness of definitions can only be assessed by (...)
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  5. In Defence of Modal Essentialism.Jonathan Livingstone-Banks - 2017 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 60 (8):816-838.
    Kit Fine’s arguments in Essence and Modality are widely accepted as being a decisive blow against modal essentialism. A selection of replies exist that have done little to counter the general view that modally construed essence is out of touch with what we really mean when we make essentialist claims. I argue that Fine’s arguments fail to strike a decisive blow, and I suggest a new interpretation of the debate that shows why Fine’s arguments fall short of achieving their goal.
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  6.  17
    Natural‐Kind Essentialism, Substance Ontology, and the Unity Problem: Two Dispositionalist Solutions.Travis Dumsday - 2016 - Dialectica 70 (4):609-626.
    What accounts for the linkage of seemingly diverse and inherently separable fundamental properties, such that they are regarded as properties of a single thing? Multiple answers to this question have been put forward in both the historical and current literature, especially from competing substance ontologies and competing theories concerning the metaphysics of natural kinds. Here I lay out and critically assess two ways in which dispositionalism might contribute to the discussion.
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  7. Essence in Abundance.Alexander Skiles - 2015 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (1):100-112.
    Fine is widely thought to have refuted the simple modal account of essence, which takes the essential properties of a thing to be those it cannot exist without exemplifying. Yet, a number of philosophers have suggested resuscitating the simple modal account by appealing to distinctions akin to the distinction Lewis draws between sparse and abundant properties, treating only those in the former class as candidates for essentiality. I argue that ‘sparse modalism’ succumbs to counterexamples similar to those originally posed by (...)
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  8.  8
    Hylomorphism and the Metabolic Closure Conception of Life.James DiFrisco - 2014 - Acta Biotheoretica 62 (4):499-525.
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  9.  27
    Individual Essence: Gibt Es Solche? [REVIEW]Márta Ujvári - 2013 - Metaphysica 14 (1):17-30.
    Two arguments are offered here for postulating individual essences of concrete individuals on top of their sortal essences. One is the explanatory gap argument, the other draws on the analogy with the individual essences of events presupposed in single causal explanations. These arguments support qualitative individual essences with explanatory goals as opposed to hybrid impure relational essences accounting for origin and numerical identity. It is highlighted why origin properties as parts of impure relational essences do not yield genuine de re (...)
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  10. On the Reduction of Necessity to Essence.Fabrice Correia - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 84 (3):639-653.
    In his influential paper ‘‘Essence and Modality’’, Kit Fine argues that no account of essence framed in terms of metaphysical necessity is possible, and that it is rather metaphysical necessity which is to be understood in terms of essence. On his account, the concept of essence is primitive, and for a proposition to be metaphysically necessary is for it to be true in virtue of the nature of all things. Fine also proposes a reduction of conceptual and logical necessity in (...)
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  11. Essence and Properties.David S. Oderberg - 2011 - Erkenntnis 75 (1):85-111.
    The distinction between the essence of an object and its properties has been obscured in contemporary discussion of essentialism. Locke held that the properties of an object are exclusively those features that ‘flow’ from its essence. Here he follows the Aristotelian theory, leaving aside Locke’s own scepticism about the knowability of essence. I defend the need to distinguish sharply between essence and properties, arguing that essence must be given by form and that properties flow from form. I give a precise (...)
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  12. Natural Kinds and the Problem of Complex Essences.Travis Dumsday - 2010 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (4):619-634.
    Natural-kind essentialism faces an important but neglected difficulty: the problem of complex essences (PCE). This is the question of how to account for the unity of an instantiated kind-essence when that essence consists of multiple distinct properties, some of which lack an inherent necessary connection between them. My central goal here is to propose an essentialism-friendly solution to this problem. Along the way I also employ some points from that solution to argue for the necessary truth of essentialism (necessary, that (...)
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  13.  83
    Emergent Substance.Patrick Toner - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 141 (3):281 - 297.
    In this paper, I develop an ontological position according to which substances such as you and I have no substantial parts. The claim is not that we are immaterial souls. Nor is the claim that we are “human atoms” co-located with human organisms. It is, rather, that we are macrophysical objects that are, in the relevant sense, simple. I contend that despite initial appearances, this claim is not obviously false, and I defend it by showing how much work it can (...)
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  14.  8
    Essence and Modality.Fabrice Correia - 2007 - Dialectica 61 (1):63-84.
    In Fine 1994, Kit Fine challenges the view that the notion of essence is to be understood in terms of the metaphysical modalities, and he argues that it is not essence which reduces to metaphysical modality, but rather metaphysical modality which reduces to essence. In this paper I put forward a modal account of essence and argue that it is immune from Fine’s objections. The account presupposes a non‐standard, independently motivated conception of the metaphysical modalities which I dub Priorean. Arthur (...)
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  15. (Finean) Essence and (Priorean) Modality.Fabrice Correia - 2007 - Dialectica 61 (1):63–84.
    In Fine 1994, Kit Fine challenges the view that the notion of essence is to be understood in terms of the metaphysical modalities, and he argues that it is not essence which reduces to metaphysical modality, but rather metaphysical modality which reduces to essence. In this paper I put forward a modal account of essence and argue that it is immune from Fine’s objections. The account presupposes a non‐standard, independently motivated conception of the metaphysical modalities which I dub Priorean. Arthur (...)
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