The Meta-Problem of Change

Noûs 43 (2):286 - 314 (2009)
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Abstract

The problem of change plays a central role in the metaphysics of time and material objects, and whoever does best in solving this problem has a leg up when it comes to choosing a metaphysics of time and material objects. But whether this central role of the problem of change in metaphysics is legitimate is not at all clear. This is so in part since it is not clear what the problem of change is, and why it is a problem in metaphysics. We will investigate what metaphysical problem the problem of change might be, and how it relates to various other problems related to change that are studied in the empirical sciences. The problem of change can thus be a case study of what makes a problem a metaphysical one and how metaphysics relates to other parts of inquiry. We conclude that the central role the problem of change is given in the contemporary metaphysics of time is not justified.

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Thomas Hofweber
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Citations of this work

The Minimal A-theory.Meghan Sullivan - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 158 (2):149-174.
Temporal Parts.Katherine Hawley - 2004/2010 - Stanford Encylopedia of Philosophy.
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The question of realism.Kit Fine - 2001 - Philosophers' Imprint 1:1-30.

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