Ideas of Donald C. Williams, by Theme

[American, 1899 - 1983, Professor at Harvard University.]

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8. Modes of Existence / B. Properties / 13. Tropes / a. Nature of tropes
A 'trope' is an abstract particular, the occurrence of an essence
     Full Idea: I shall divert the word 'trope' to stand for the abstract particular which is, so to speak, the occurrence of an essence.
     From: Donald C. Williams (On the Elements of Being: I [1953], p.115)
     A reaction: Thus tropes entered philosophical discussion. Presumably the precedent for an 'abstract particular' would be a particular occurrence of the number 7.
'Socrates is wise' means a concurrence sum contains a member of a similarity set
     Full Idea: 'Socrates is wise' means that the concurrence sum (Socrates) includes a trope which is a member of the similarity set (Wisdom).
     From: Donald C. Williams (On the Elements of Being: I [1953], p.119)
     A reaction: Resemblance has to be taken as a basic (and presumably unanalysable) concept, which invites Russell's objection (Idea 4441).
A world is completely constituted by its tropes and their connections
     Full Idea: Any possible world, and hence, of course, this one, is completely constituted by its tropes and connections of location and similarity.
     From: Donald C. Williams (On the Elements of Being: I [1953], p.116)
     A reaction: Note that Williams regularly referred to possible worlds in 1953. This is a full-blooded trope theory, which asserts that objects are bundles of tropes, so that both particulars and universals are ontologically taken care of.