Analytic Philosophy 56 (4):318-337 (2015)
AbstractMereological nihilism (henceforth just "nihilism") is the thesis that composition never occurs. Nihilism has often been defended on the basis of its theoretical simplicity, including its ontological simplicity and its ideological simplicity (roughly, nihilism's ability to do without primitive mereological predicates). In this paper I defend nihilism on the basis of the theoretical unification conferred by nihilism, which is, roughly, nihilism's capacity to allow us to take fewer phenomena as brute and inexplicable. This represents a respect in which nihilism enjoys greater theoretical simplicity than its rivals which has not yet been explored, and which is immune to many of the objections which have been leveled against previous arguments for nihilism from nihilism's theoretical simplicity. Composition as identity might be thought to confer a similar degree of theoretical unification as nihilism. I end the paper by arguing that this is not the case.
Similar books and articles
No Simples, No Gunk, No Nothing.Sam Cowling - 2014 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 95 (1):246-260.
Mereological Nihilism and the Special Arrangement Question.Andrew Brenner - 2015 - Synthese 192 (5):1295-1314.
One's a Crowd: Mereological Nihilism Without Ordinary‐Object Eliminativism.Gabriele Contessa - 2014 - Analytic Philosophy 55 (2):199-221.
No Composition, No Problem: Ordinary Objects as Arrangements.Jonah P. B. Goldwater - 2015 - Philosophia 43 (2):367-379.
Nihilism, Performativity and the Ontology of Everyday Life.Rita Šerpytytė - 2010 - Problemos 77:7-14.
Fragmentation in Focus: History, Integration, and the Project of Evaluation.Stephen C. Yanchar - 1997 - Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 17 (2):150-170.
From Hume's Dictum Via Submergence to Composition as Identity or Mereological Nihilism.Einar Duenger Bohn - 2014 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 95 (1):336-355.
The Mereological Foundation of Megethology.Massimiliano Carrara & Enrico Martino - 2016 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 45 (2):227-235.
The Spirit of Unification in Sociological Theory.Thomas J. Fararo - 1989 - Sociological Theory 7 (2):175-190.
Peter Unger's Argument in Favour of Mereological Nihilism.Krzysztof Hansen - 2011 - Filozofia Nauki 19 (2):85.
From Nihilism to Monism.Jonathan Schaffer - 2007 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 85 (2):175 – 191.
Added to PP
Historical graph of downloads
Citations of this work
Simplicity as a Criterion of Theory Choice in Metaphysics.Andrew Brenner - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (11):2687-2707.
Mereological Nihilism and Puzzles About Material Objects.Bradley Rettler - 2018 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (4):842-868.
Why Composition Matters.Andrew M. Bailey & Andrew Brenner - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (8):934-949.
References found in this work
Four Dimensionalism: An Ontology of Persistence and Time.Theodore Sider - 2001 - Oxford University Press.