On Inadvertently Made Tables: a Brockean Theory of Concrete Artifacts

Acta Analytica 36 (1):1-9 (2021)
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Abstract

There has been a lot of discussion recently regarding abstract artifacts and how such entities (e.g., fictional characters like Sherlock Holmes, and mythological planets like Vulcan), if they indeed exist, could possibly be our creations. One interesting aspect of some of these debates concerns the extent to which creative intentions play a role in the creation of artifacts generally, both abstract and concrete. I here address the creation of concrete artifacts in particular. I ultimately defend a Brock-inspired, heterodox view on which creative intentions are not at all necessary for the creation of concrete artifacts. A concrete artifact is just a hunk of matter having a certain configuration owing to human activity and, given that configuration, is disposed to participate in other human activities.

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Jeffrey Goodman
James Madison University

Citations of this work

Artifacts and Mind-Dependence.Tim Juvshik - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):9313-9336.
Artifactualization Without Physical Modification.Tim Juvshik - 2021 - Res Philosophica 98 (4):545-572.
A Metaphysics of Artifacts: Essence and Mind-Dependence.Tim Juvshik - 2022 - Dissertation, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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References found in this work

Material Beings.Peter van Inwagen - 1990 - Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
Material Beings.Peter Van Inwagen - 1990 - Cornell University Press.
Four Dimensionalism: An Ontology of Persistence and Time.Theodore Sider - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (3):642-647.
Ordinary Objects.Amie L. Thomasson (ed.) - 2007 - Oxford University Press.

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