Massimiliano Carrara
University of Padua
In the debate about Composition as Identity (CI), a recurring pattern is to ask whether a certain feature of identity is also instantiated by composition. This recurring pattern is followed when, for example, the question is asked whether a whole and its parts are indiscernible. In following this pattern, it is methodologically desirable to assume the most standard account of the philosophical problems at stake. However, when the necessity of identity and the problem whether composition is as necessary as identity are at stake, the literature about CI often violates this methodological principle, and resorts to non-standard views about modality, such as counterpart theory. In this paper, we purport to remedy this anomaly and to assess CI on the background of a standard, broadly Kripkean view of modality, and in particular of the contention that a single entity exists in more than one possible world. Given this contention, the backer of CI is forced to relativize composition and, as a consequence, identity to possible worlds, thereby introducing a non-standard kind of identity. We will discuss the charge of adhocness which might be raised against the resulting variety of CI.
Keywords identity  mereology  modality
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