Against the Compositional View of Facts

Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (1):91-100 (2011)
William Bynoe
University of London
It is commonly assumed that facts would be complex entities made out of particulars and universals. This thesis, which I call Compositionalism, holds that parthood may be construed broadly enough so that the relation that holds between a fact and the entities it ‘ties’ together counts as a kind of parthood. I argue firstly that Compositionalism is incompatible with the possibility of certain kinds of fact and universal, and, secondly, that such facts and universals are possible. I conclude that Compositionalism is false. What all these kinds of fact and universal have in common is a violation of supplementation principles governing any relation that may be intelligibly regarded as a kind of parthood. Although my arguments apply to Compositionalism generally, I focus on recent work by David Armstrong, who is a prominent and explicit Compositionalist.
Keywords Facts  States of Affairs  David Armstrong  Parthood
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DOI 10.1080/00048400903521025
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References found in this work BETA

Parts: A Study in Ontology.Peter Simons - 1987 - Oxford University Press.
What is a Law of Nature?D. M. Armstrong - 1983 - Cambridge University Press.
What Numbers Could Not Be.Paul Benacerraf - 1965 - Philosophical Review 74 (1):47-73.
Hylomorphism.Mark Johnston - 2006 - Journal of Philosophy 103 (12):652-698.

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