Multilocation and mereology

Philosophical Perspectives 25 (1):253-276 (2011)
Multilocation and Minimal Mereology do not mix well. It has been pointed out that Three-Dimensionalism, which can be construed as multilocation-friendly, runs into trouble with Weak Supplementation. But in fact, regardless of one’s theory of persistence, if someone posits the possibility of any one of several kinds of multilocation, he or she will not be able to maintain the necessity of any of the three axioms of Minimal Mereology: the Transitivity of Proper Parthood, the Asymmetry of Proper Parthood, and Weak Supplementation. In fact, positing even the mere conceivability of cases involving multilocation will require the denial of the analyticity of Minimal Mereology. In response to this, some have claimed that we ought to relativise parthood, either to one region or to two. Unfortunately, if we replace the axioms of Minimal Mereology with region-relativised counterparts, we will not be able to capture the intuitions that supported the original axioms. The only adequate solution, I maintain, is to restrict multilocation to a domain outside the scope of the rules we intuitively take to govern the parthood relation. For those who take Minimal Mereology to be necessary and universal, that will mean relinquishing the possibility of multilocation.
Keywords Mereology  Location  Multilocation  three-dimensionalism  four-dimensionalism  transitivity  persistence  asymmetry  weak supplementation  parthood
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DOI 10.1111/j.1520-8583.2011.00215.x
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Kris McDaniel (2007). Extended Simples. Philosophical Studies 133 (1):131 - 141.

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