more from Saul A. Kripke

Single Idea 16995

[catalogued under 9. Objects / C. Structure of Objects / 6. Constitution of an Object]

Full Idea

This table is composed of molecules. …Could anything be this very object and not be composed of molecules? …It's hard to imagine under what circumstances you would have this very object and find that it is not composed of molecules.

Gist of Idea

Given that a table is made of molecules, could it not be molecular and still be this table?


Saul A. Kripke (Naming and Necessity lectures [1970], Lecture 1)

Book Reference

Kripke,Saul: 'Naming and Necessity' [Blackwell 1980], p.47

A Reaction

This is the thesis of essentiality of constitution. Given that it is square, might it have been round? Yes. Given that it is wood, might it have been metal? No? Given that it is molecular, might it have been plasma? No. ….Maybe.

Related Idea

Idea 16991 No one seems to know the identity conditions for a material object (or for people) over time [Kripke]