Dispositions and habituals

Noûs 39 (1):43–82 (2005)

Abstract

Objects have dispositions. As Nelson Goodman put it, “a thing is full of threats and promises”. But sometimes those threats go unfulfilled, and the promises unkept. Sometimes the dispositions of objects fail to manifest themselves, even when their conditions of manifestation obtain. Pieces of wood, disposed to burn when heated, do not burn when heated in a vacuum chamber. And pastries, disposed to go bad when left lying around too long, won’t do so if coated with lacquer and put on display in a baker ’s window. Any account of what a disposition is, or of what it takes for an object to have a disposition, should be compatible with these commonplace observations. To date, I believe, no adequate account of dispositions has been given, and the aim of this paper is to defend one

Download options

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 72,879

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Analytics

Added to PP
2009-01-28

Downloads
388 (#27,079)

6 months
7 (#101,877)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

References found in this work

Word and Object.Willard Van Orman Quine - 1960 - Cambridge, MA, USA: MIT Press.
Counterfactuals.David Kellogg Lewis - 1973 - Cambridge, MA, USA: Blackwell.
Fact, Fiction, and Forecast.Nelson Goodman - 1955 - Harvard University Press.

View all 44 references / Add more references

Citations of this work

Skill.Jason Stanley & Timothy Williamson - 2017 - Noûs 51 (4):713-726.
Masked Abilities and Compatibilism.M. Fara - 2008 - Mind 117 (468):843-865.
Dispositions Without Conditionals.Barbara Vetter - 2014 - Mind 123 (489):129-156.
Are Abilities Dispositions?Barbara Vetter - 2019 - Synthese 196 (196):201-220.

View all 118 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Dispositions and Subjunctives.Jesse R. Steinberg - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 148 (3):323 - 341.
Causation, Laws and Dispositions.Andreas Hüttemann - 2007 - In Max Kistler & Bruno Gnassounou (eds.), Dispositions and Causal Powers. Ashgate.
The Bare Metaphysical Possibility of Bare Dispositions.Jennifer Mckitrick - 2003 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 66 (2):349–369.
What a Law of Nature Is.W. Russ Payne - forthcoming - Philosophical Explorations.
Dispositions.Michael Fara - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.