Maudlin on the Triangle Inequality

Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 4 (2):124-130 (2015)
Marco Dees
Rutgers University - New Brunswick (PhD)
Tim Maudlin argues that we should take facts about distance to be analyzed in terms of facts about path lengths. His reason is that if we take distances to be fundamental, we must stipulate that constraints like the triangle inequality hold, but we get these constraints for free if we take path lengths to be prior. I argue that Maudlin is mistaken. Even if we take path lengths as primitive, the triangle inequality follows only if we stipulate that the fundamental properties and relations obey constraints that are just as puzzling as the triangle inequality.
Keywords metaphysics  triangle inequality  quantity  space  Humeanism
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DOI 10.1002/tht3.165
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References found in this work BETA

The Metaphysics Within Physics.Tim Maudlin - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
The Metaphysics within Physics.Tim Maudlin - 2007 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 69 (3):610-611.
In Defense of the Existence of States of Motion.Michael Tooley - 1988 - Philosophical Topics 16 (1):225-254.
The Fabric of Space: Intrinsic Vs. Extrinsic Distance Relations.Phillip Bricker - 1993 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 18 (1):271-294.
The Metaphysics of Quantity.Brent Mundy - 1987 - Philosophical Studies 51 (1):29 - 54.

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