Extended Simples

The Monist 87 (3):371--85 (2004)
Abstract
I argue that the assumptions that physically basic things are either mereologically atomic, or that they are continuous and there are no atoms, both face difficult conceptual problems. Both views tend to presuppose a largely unquestioned assumption, that things have parts corresponding to the geometric parts of the regions they occupy. To avoid these problems I propose a third view, that physically simple things occupy a finite volume without themselves having parts. This view is examined enough to tease out some of its consequences and show that it withstands the obvious questions it faces. I conclude by mentioning some precedents for this view in Democritus, Kant, and Whitehead, with close variants in Boscovich, Harré, and Markosian.
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest  Philosophy of Mind  Philosophy of Science
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ISBN(s) 0026-9662
DOI 10.5840/monist200487315
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Citations of this work BETA
Parts as Counterparts.A. J. Cotnoir - 2013 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (3):228-241.
Simples and Gunk.Hud Hudson - 2007 - Philosophy Compass 2 (2):291–302.

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