Philosophia 37 (2):335-340 (2009)

Authors
Tuomas E. Tahko
University of Bristol
Abstract
In this paper I offer a counterexample to the so called vagueness argument against restricted composition. This will be done in the lines of a recent suggestion by Trenton Merricks, namely by challenging the claim that there cannot be a sharp cut-off point in a composition sequence. It will be suggested that causal powers which emerge when composition occurs can serve as an indicator of such sharp cut-off points. The main example will be the case of a heap. It seems that heaps might provide a very plausible counterexample to the vagueness argument if we accept the idea that four grains of sand is the least number required to compose a heap—the case has been supported by W. D. Hart. My purpose here is not to put forward a new theory of composition, I only wish to refute the vagueness argument and point out that we should be wary of arguments of its form.
Keywords vagueness  composition  merricks  heaps  sorites  causal powers
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11406-008-9172-2
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

References found in this work BETA

On the Plurality of Worlds.David Lewis - 1986 - Wiley-Blackwell.
Vagueness.Timothy Williamson - 1994 - London and New York: Routledge.
On the Plurality of Worlds.David Lewis - 1986 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 178 (3):388-390.
Objects and Persons.Trenton Merricks - 2001 - New York: Oxford University Press.

View all 20 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Ordinary Objects.Daniel Z. Korman - 2011 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Composition.Daniel Z. Korman & Chad Carmichael - 2016 - Oxford Handbooks Online.
Minimal Truthmakers.Donnchadh O'Conaill & Tuomas E. Tahko - 2016 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 97 (2):228-244.
Structures as Relations.Michele Paolini Paoletti - 2021 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 11):S2671-S2690.

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

On Vagueness, 4d and Diachronic Universalism.Yuri Balashov - 2005 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83 (4):523 – 531.
Endurantism, Diachronic Vagueness and the Problem of the Many.By Kristie Miller - 2008 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 89 (2):242–253.
Is 'Everything' Precise?Dan López de Sa - 2006 - Dialectica 60 (4):397–409.
The Argument From Vagueness.Daniel Z. Korman - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (10):891-901.
Composition and Vagueness.Trenton Merricks - 2005 - Mind 114 (455):615-637.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
448 ( #21,088 of 2,504,813 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
18 ( #47,871 of 2,504,813 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes