Vague parts and vague identity

Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 90 (2):176-187 (2009)

Authors
Robert Williams
University of Leeds
Elizabeth Barnes
University of Virginia
Abstract
We discuss arguments against the thesis that the world itself can be vague. The first section of the paper distinguishes dialectically effective from ineffective arguments against metaphysical vagueness. The second section constructs an argument against metaphysical vagueness that promises to be of the dialectically effective sort: an argument against objects with vague parts. Firstly, cases of vague parthood commit one to cases of vague identity. But we argue that Evans' famous argument against will not on its own enable one to complete the reductio in the present context. We provide a metaphysical premise that would complete the reductio, but note that it seems deniable. We conclude by drawing general morals from our case study.
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DOI 10.1111/j.1468-0114.2009.01335.x
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References found in this work BETA

Parts: A Study in Ontology.Peter Simons - 1987 - Oxford University Press.
On the Plurality of Worlds.William G. Lycan - 1988 - Journal of Philosophy 85 (1):42-47.
On the Plurality of Worlds.David Lewis - 1986 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 178 (3):388-390.
Parts : a Study in Ontology.Peter Simons - 1987 - Revue de Métaphysique et de Morale 2:277-279.
Reference and Essence.Nathan Salmon - 1981 - Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

A Theory of Metaphysical Indeterminacy.Elizabeth Barnes & J. Robert G. Williams - 2011 - In Karen Bennett & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), Oxford Studies in Metaphysics volume 6. Oxford University Press. pp. 103-148.
Vagueness & Modality—An Ecumenical Approach.Jon Erling Litland & Juhani Yli-Vakkuri - 2016 - Philosophical Perspectives 30 (1):229-269.
Vague Objects and the Problem of the Many.Thomas Sattig - 2013 - Metaphysica 14 (2):211-223.

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Similar books and articles

Multiple Actualities and Ontically Vague Identity.Robert Williams - 2008 - Philosophical Quarterly 58 (230):134-154.
A Modal Argument Against Vague Objects.Joseph G. Moore - 2008 - Philosophers' Imprint 8:1-17.
Vagueness and Identity.Loretta Torrago - 1999 - The Proceedings of the Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy 1999:161-170.

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