Essence and modality

Mind 115 (459):659-693 (2006)
Authors
Edward Zalta
Stanford University
Abstract
Some recently-proposed counterexamples to the traditional definition of essential property do not require a separate logic of essence. Instead, the examples can be analysed in terms of the logic and theory of abstract objects. This theory distinguishes between abstract and ordinary objects, and provides a general analysis of the essential properties of both kinds of object. The claim ‘x has F necessarily’ becomes ambiguous in the case of abstract objects, and in the case of ordinary objects there are various ways to make the definition of ‘F is essential to x’ more fine-grained. Consequently, the traditional definition of essential property for abstract objects in terms of modal notions is not correct, and for ordinary objects the relationship between essential properties and modality, once properly understood, addresses the counterexample.
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DOI 10.1093/mind/fzl659
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Metaphysics of the Principle of Least Action.Vladislav Terekhovich - 2018 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 62:189-201.
Essence and Logical Properties.Hashem Morvarid - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
Essence in Abundance.Alexander Skiles - 2015 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (1):100-112.
In Defence of Modal Essentialism.Jonathan Livingstone-Banks - 2017 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 60 (8):816-838.
On the Reduction of Necessity to Essence.Fabrice Correia - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 84 (3):639-653.

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