The bare metaphysical possibility of bare dispositions

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 66 (2):349–369 (2003)
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Abstract

Many philosophers hold that all dispositions must have independent causal bases. I challenge this view, hence defending the possibility of bare dispositions. In part 1, I explain more fully what I mean by "disposition," "causal basis," and "bare disposition." In part 2, I consider the claim that the concept of a disposition entails that dispositions are not bare. In part 3, I consider arguments, due to Prior, Pargetter, and Jackson, that dispositions necessarily have distinct causal bases. In part 4, I consider arguments by Smith and Stoljar that there can't be bare dispositions because they would make for unwelcome "barely true" counterfactuals. In the end, I find no reason to deny the possibility of bare dispositions.

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Jennifer McKitrick
University of Nebraska, Lincoln

References found in this work

How to Speak of the Colors.Mark Johnston - 1992 - Philosophical Studies 68 (3):221-263.
Finkish Dispositions.David K. Lewis - 1997 - Philosophical Quarterly 47 (187):143-158.
Monist.[author unknown] - 1967 - Review of Metaphysics 21 (2):403-405.
Causal Efficacy.[author unknown] - 1987 - Process Studies 16 (2):126-139.

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