Concepts, intentions and material objects. Some comments on Evnine’s proposal in making objects and events
Manuscrito 43 (1):73-114 (2020)
AbstractIn this paper I present and critically discuss Simon Evnine’s account of hylomorphically complex objects (as presented in his 2016 book Making Objects and Events). On the one hand, I object to the account he gives of how artifacts (which are for him the paradigmatic cases of hylomorphically complex objects) allegedly acquire their existence and identity conditions. I elaborate on two problems I see for this account: first, that it seems unable to explain our knowledge of the kinds to which artifacts belong; second, that it cannot offer a plausible solution to the grounding problem for coincident objects. I also object to the way in which he tries to adapt the sort of account he gave for artifacts to the case of organisms (in my view this fails because both cases are dissimilar at crucial points), and finally I also object to his attempt to extend that account, in a fictional way, to the case of natural non-organic objects (as I try to show, both his arguments to the effect that there are no such objects, and his positive fictionalist proposal to account for our talk about them, are flawed).
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