Supervenience and object-dependent properties

Journal of Philosophy 102 (1):5-32 (2005)
Abstract
I argue that the semantic thesis of direct reference and the meta- physical thesis of the supervenience of the non-physical on the physical cannot both be true. The argument first develops a necessary condition for supervenience, a so-called conditional locality requirement, which is then shown to be incompatible with some physical object having object dependent properties, which in turn is required for the thesis of direct reference to be true. We apply this argument to formulate a new argument against the claim that a thisness is analyzable in purely general terms, one that does not rely on complete symmetry nor the falsity of the identity of indiscernibles. I outline a strategy at the end how the conclusion could be avoided, at a price.
Keywords Dependence  Direct  Metaphysics  Object  Property  Reference  Supervenience
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DOI 10.5840/jphil2005102128
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