Combining Philosophers

All the ideas for Cardinal/Hayward/Jones, Mulligan/Simons/Smith and David Robb

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14 ideas

3. Truth / B. Truthmakers / 2. Truthmaker Relation
Part-whole is the key relation among truth-makers [Mulligan/Simons/Smith]
     Full Idea: The most important (ontological) relations holding among truth-makers are the part and whole relations.
     From: Mulligan/Simons/Smith (Truth-makers [1984], 6)
     A reaction: Hence Peter Simons goes off and writes the best known book on mereology. Looks very promising to me.
3. Truth / B. Truthmakers / 5. What Makes Truths / a. What makes truths
Moments (objects which cannot exist alone) may serve as truth-makers [Mulligan/Simons/Smith]
     Full Idea: A 'moment' is an existentially dependent or non-self-sufficient object, that is, an object which is of such a nature that it cannot exist alone, ....... and we suggest that moments could serve as truth-makers.
     From: Mulligan/Simons/Smith (Truth-makers [1984], 2)
     A reaction: [These three writers invented the term 'truth-maker']
The truth-maker for a sentence may not be unique, or may be a combination, or several separate items [Mulligan/Simons/Smith]
     Full Idea: A proposition may have a minimal truth-maker which is not unique, or a sentence may be made true by no single truth-maker but only by several jointly, or again only by several separately.
     From: Mulligan/Simons/Smith (Truth-makers [1984], 3)
Truth-makers cannot be the designata of the sentences they make true [Mulligan/Simons/Smith]
     Full Idea: Truth-makers cannot be the designata of the sentences they make true, because sentences with more than one truth-maker would then be ambiguous, and 'a' and 'a exists' would have the same designatum.
     From: Mulligan/Simons/Smith (Truth-makers [1984], 3)
Despite negative propositions, truthmakers are not logical complexes, but ordinary experiences [Mulligan/Simons/Smith]
     Full Idea: Because of negative propositions, investigators of truth-makers have said that they are special non-objectual entities with a logical complexity, but we think a theory is possible in which the truth relation is tied to ordinary and scientific experience.
     From: Mulligan/Simons/Smith (Truth-makers [1984], 6)
3. Truth / C. Correspondence Truth / 3. Correspondence Truth critique
Correspondence has to invoke facts or states of affairs, just to serve as truth-makers [Mulligan/Simons/Smith]
     Full Idea: The correspondence theory of truth invokes a special category of non-objectual entities - facts, states of affairs, or whatever - simply to serve as truth-makers.
     From: Mulligan/Simons/Smith (Truth-makers [1984], 3)
9. Objects / B. Unity of Objects / 2. Substance / d. Substance defined
A substance is, roughly, a basic being or subject at the foundation of reality [Robb]
     Full Idea: A substance is a basic being, something at reality's foundation. What exactly this means is a matter of some controversy. Some philosophers think of substance as an ultimate subject, something that has properties but isn't a property.
     From: David Robb (Substance [2009], 'Intro')
     A reaction: This seems to capture the place of 'substance' in contemporary metaphysics. I think of 'substance' as a placeholder for some threatened account, even in Aristotle.
9. Objects / C. Structure of Objects / 8. Parts of Objects / c. Wholes from parts
If an object survives the loss of a part, complex objects can have autonomy over their parts [Robb]
     Full Idea: Sometimes a whole can survive a loss of parts: the chair would still exist if it lost one of its legs. This seems to give complex objects a sort of autonomy over their parts.
     From: David Robb (Substance [2009], 'Ident')
     A reaction: There is then a puzzle as to how much loss of parts the whole can survive, and why. The loss of a major part could be devastating, so why do all wholes not exhibit this relation to all their parts? I demand rules, now!
11. Knowledge Aims / C. Knowing Reality / 2. Phenomenalism
The phenomenalist says that to be is to be perceivable [Cardinal/Hayward/Jones]
     Full Idea: Where the idealist says that to be (i.e. to exist) is to be perceived, the phenomenalist says that to be is to be perceivable.
     From: Cardinal/Hayward/Jones (Epistemology [2004], Ch.4)
     A reaction: This is a nice phenomenalist slogan to add to Mill's well known one (Idea 3583). Expressed in this form, it looks false to me. What about neutrinoes? They weren't at all perceivable until recently. Maybe some physical stuff can never be perceived.
Linguistic phenomenalism says we can eliminate talk of physical objects [Cardinal/Hayward/Jones]
     Full Idea: Linguistic phenomenalism argues that it is possible to remove all talk of physical objects from our speech with no loss of meaning.
     From: Cardinal/Hayward/Jones (Epistemology [2004], Ch.4)
     A reaction: I find this proposal unappealing. My basic objection is that I cannot understand why anyone would refuse to even contemplate the question of WHY I am having a given group of consistent experiences, of (say) a table kind.
If we lack enough sense-data, are we to say that parts of reality are 'indeterminate'? [Cardinal/Hayward/Jones]
     Full Idea: The problem with taking sense-data as basic is that some data can appear indeterminate. If we can't discern the colour of someone's eyes, or the number of sides of a complex figure, are we to say that there is no fact about those things?
     From: Cardinal/Hayward/Jones (Epistemology [2004], Ch.4)
     A reaction: I like that. How many electrons are there in the sun? Such things cannot just be reduced to talk of sense-data, as there is obviously a vast gap between the data and the facts. As usual, ontology and epistemology must be kept separate.
12. Knowledge Sources / B. Perception / 2. Qualities in Perception / c. Primary qualities
Primary qualities can be described mathematically, unlike secondary qualities [Cardinal/Hayward/Jones]
     Full Idea: All the primary qualities lend themselves readily to mathematical or geometric description. ...but it seems that secondary qualities are less amenable to being represented mathematically.
     From: Cardinal/Hayward/Jones (Epistemology [2004], Ch.4)
     A reaction: As a believer in the primary/secondary distinction, I welcome this point. This is either evidence for the external reality of primary qualities, or an interesting observation about maths. Do we make the primary/secondary distinction because we do maths?
An object cannot remain an object without its primary qualities [Cardinal/Hayward/Jones]
     Full Idea: An object cannot lack shape, size, position or motion and remain an object.
     From: Cardinal/Hayward/Jones (Epistemology [2004], Ch.4)
     A reaction: This points towards the essentialist view (see Idea 5453). This does raise the question of whether an object could lose its colour with impugnity, or the quality of sound that it makes when struck.
13. Knowledge Criteria / B. Internal Justification / 5. Coherentism / c. Coherentism critique
My justifications might be very coherent, but totally unconnected to the world [Cardinal/Hayward/Jones]
     Full Idea: My beliefs could be well justified in coherentist terms, while not accurately representing the world, and my system of beliefs could be completely free-floating.
     From: Cardinal/Hayward/Jones (Epistemology [2004], Ch.3)
     A reaction: This nicely encapsulates to correspondence objection to coherence theory. One thing missing from the coherence account is that beliefs aren't chosen for their coherence, but are mostly unthinkingly triggered by experiences.