A Relation as the Unifier of States of Affairs

Dialectica 62 (1):1–19 (2008)

Authors
Bo R. Meinertsen
Tongji University
Abstract
This paper is concerned with what I call the ‘problem of unity’ . This is the puzzle of how Armstrong‐like states of affairs are unified. The general approach is ‘relational internalism’: the unifier of such a state of affairs is a relation of some sort in it. A view commonly associated with relational internalism is that if such a relation satisfies a certain ‘naive’ expectation to a relation – that it is related to its relata – then Bradley's regress results. As I argue, for one very natural species of relational internalism, this is indeed the case. Influential writers on the topic have therefore maintained that this relation is not related to its relata. But, as we shall see, while this ‘classic’ relational internalism obviously avoids Bradley's regress, intuitively, it fails completely to solve the problem of unity. I argue, however, that given the rejection of a natural, but unfounded, assumption of conventional relational internalism, a unique relation can unify states of affairs without leading to Bradley's regress. I consequently propose a novel version of relational internalism on which states of affairs are unified by such an entity
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/j.1746-8361.2007.01127.x
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 40,686
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Truth and Truthmakers.D. M. Armstrong - 2004 - Cambridge University Press.
Counterfactuals.David K. Lewis - 1973 - Blackwell.
A World of States of Affairs.D. M. Armstrong - 1993 - Philosophical Perspectives 7 (3):429-440.

View all 28 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Unity of Linguistic Meaning.John Collins - 2011 - Oxford University Press.

View all 10 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

States of Affairs.Hans Kraml - 1998 - Erkenntnis 48 (2-3):311-324.
Does Armstrong Need States of Affairs?James D. Rissler - 2006 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 84 (2):193 – 209.
Unity and Primary Substance for Aristotle.Catherine Jack Deavel - 2003 - Proceedings of the American Catholic Philosophical Association 77:159-172.
Consequentialist Teleology and the Valuation of States of Affairs.Robert F. Card - 2004 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 7 (3):253-265.
Truth Breakers.Dale Jacquette - 2010 - Topoi 29 (2):153-163.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
78 ( #98,245 of 2,242,910 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
6 ( #320,501 of 2,242,910 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature