Possibility of Metaphysics: Substance, Identity, and Time

Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press UK (1998)
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Jonathan Lowe argues that metaphysics should be restored to a central position in philosophy, as the most fundamental form of rational inquiry, whose findings underpin those of all other disciplines. He portrays metaphysics as charting the possibilities of existence, by idetifying the categories of being and the relations of ontological dependency between entities of different categories. He proceeds to set out a unified and original metaphysical system: he defends a substance ontology, according to which the existence of the world s one world in time depends upon the existence of persisting things which retain their identity over time and through processes of qualitative change. And he contends that even necessary beings, such as the abstract objects of mathematics, depend ultimately for their existence upon there being a concrete world of enduring substances. Within his system of metaphysics Lowe seeks to answer many of the deepest and most challenging questions in philosophy.



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The Possibility of Metaphysics

A positive answer to Kant's famous question, ‘How is metaphysics possible?’, is given—one that represents metaphysics as being an autonomous and indispensable intellectual discipline whose task is to chart the domain of real possibilities. The notions of ‘real’ or ‘metaphysical’ possibilit... see more

Categories and Kinds

The account of the ontological categories begun earlier in the book is completed and it is explained why and how such categories, which have an a priori status, must be distinguished from the empirically discoverable natural kinds into which objects—and, more particularly, naturally occurr... see more

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Citations of this work

Metaphysical grounding.Ricki Bliss & Kelly Trogdon - 2021 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
No Work for a Theory of Grounding.Jessica M. Wilson - 2014 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 57 (5-6):535-579.
Inference to the Best explanation.Peter Lipton - 2004 - In Martin Curd & Stathis Psillos (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Science. Routledge. pp. 193.
Viciousness and the structure of reality.Ricki Leigh Bliss - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 166 (2):399-418.

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References found in this work

On concept and object.Gottlob Frege - 1951 - Mind 60 (238):168-180.
Why Is There Anything At All?Peter van Inwagen & E. J. Lowe - 1996 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 70 (1):95-120.
Events and reification.Willard V. Quine - 1985 - In E. Lepore & B. McLaughlin (eds.), Actions and Events: Perspectives on the Philosophy of Davidson. Blackwell. pp. 162-71.
Speaking of Objects.W. V. Quine - 1958 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 24 (3):268-269.

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