On Properties

In Rescher Nicholas (ed.), Essays in Honor of Carl G. Hempel: A Tribute on the Occasion of his Sixty-Fifth Birthday. Springer Netherlands. pp. 235-254 (1969)

It has been maintained by such philosophers as Quine and Goodman that purely ‘extensional’ language suffices for all the purposes of properly formalized scientific discourse. Those entities that were traditionally called ‘universals’ — properties, concepts, forms, etc. — are rejected by these extensionalist philosophers on the ground that ‘the principle of individuation is not clear’. It is conceded that science requires that we allow something tantamount to quantification over non-particulars (or, anyway, over things that are not material objects, not space-time points, not physical fields, etc.), but, the extensionalists contend, quantification over sets serves the purposes nicely. The ‘ontology’ of modern science, at least as Quine formalizes it, comprises material objects (or, alternatively, space-time points), sets of material objects, sets of sets of material objects,... but no properties, concepts,or forms. Let us thus examine the question: Can the principle of individuation for properties ever be made clear?
Keywords properties  concepts  metaphysics
Categories (categorize this paper)
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: 39,966
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Spontaniczność świadomości.Robert Hanna & Evan Thompson - 2010 - Avant: Trends in Interdisciplinary Studies 1 (1).
Preface.Raphael van Riel & Albert Newen - 2011 - Philosophia Naturalis 48 (1):5-8.
The Super-Overdetermination Problem.John Donaldson - 2015 - Dissertation, University of Glasgow

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total views
59 ( #127,882 of 2,235,927 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
16 ( #45,638 of 2,235,927 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes

Sign in to use this feature