more from J Hoffman/G Rosenkrantz

Single Idea 8964

[catalogued under 2. Reason / B. Laws of Thought / 6. Ockham's Razor]

Full Idea

There are two ways that entities can be multiplied unnecessarily: by multiplying the number of explanatory categories, and by multiplying the number of entities within a category.

Gist of Idea

Entities can be multiplied either by excessive categories, or excessive entities within a category


J Hoffman/G Rosenkrantz (Platonistic Theories of Universals [2003], 4)

Book Reference

'The Oxford Handbook of Metaphysics', ed/tr. Loux,M /Zimmerman,D [OUP 2005], p.69

A Reaction

An important distinction. The orthodox view is that it is the excess of categories that is to be avoided (e.g. by nominalists). Possible worlds in metaphysics, and multiple worlds in physics, claim not to violate the first case.