Ideas from 'Varieties of Things' by Cynthia Macdonald [2005], by Theme Structure

[found in 'Varieties of Things' by Macdonald,Cynthia [Blackwell 2005,0-631-18695-6]].

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1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 4. Aims of Philosophy / d. Philosophy as puzzles
Philosophy tries to explain how the actual is possible, given that it seems impossible
1. Philosophy / F. Analytic Philosophy / 4. Ordinary Language
'Did it for the sake of x' doesn't involve a sake, so how can ontological commitments be inferred?
2. Reason / F. Fallacies / 5. Fallacy of Composition
Don't assume that a thing has all the properties of its parts
7. Existence / C. Structure of Existence / 2. Reduction
Reduce by bridge laws (plus property identities?), by elimination, or by reducing talk
8. Modes of Existence / A. Relations / 2. Internal Relations
Relational properties are clearly not essential to substances
8. Modes of Existence / A. Relations / 4. Formal Relations / a. Types of relation
Being taller is an external relation, but properties and substances have internal relations
8. Modes of Existence / B. Properties / 12. Denial of Properties
Does the knowledge of each property require an infinity of accompanying knowledge?
8. Modes of Existence / B. Properties / 13. Tropes / a. Nature of tropes
Tropes are abstract (two can occupy the same place), but not universals (they have locations)
Properties are sets of exactly resembling property-particulars
Tropes are abstract particulars, not concrete particulars, so the theory is not nominalist
8. Modes of Existence / B. Properties / 13. Tropes / b. Critique of tropes
How do a group of resembling tropes all resemble one another in the same way?
Trope Nominalism is the only nominalism to introduce new entities, inviting Ockham's Razor
8. Modes of Existence / D. Universals / 2. Need for Universals
Numerical sameness is explained by theories of identity, but what explains qualitative identity?
8. Modes of Existence / D. Universals / 6. Platonic Forms / b. Partaking
How can universals connect instances, if they are nothing like them?
8. Modes of Existence / E. Nominalism / 1. Nominalism / c. Nominalism about abstracta
Real Nominalism is only committed to concrete particulars, word-tokens, and (possibly) sets
8. Modes of Existence / E. Nominalism / 2. Resemblance Nominalism
Resemblance Nominalism cannot explain either new resemblances, or absence of resemblances
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 4. Individuation / c. Individuation by location
A 'thing' cannot be in two places at once, and two things cannot be in the same place at once
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 4. Individuation / e. Individuation by kind
We 'individuate' kinds of object, and 'identify' particular specimens
9. Objects / B. Unity of Objects / 2. Substance / a. Substance
Unlike bundles of properties, substances have an intrinsic unity
9. Objects / B. Unity of Objects / 2. Substance / d. Substance defined
The bundle theory of substance implies the identity of indiscernibles
9. Objects / B. Unity of Objects / 2. Substance / e. Substance critique
A phenomenalist cannot distinguish substance from attribute, so must accept the bundle view
When we ascribe a property to a substance, the bundle theory will make that a tautology
Substances persist through change, but the bundle theory says they can't
A substance might be a sequence of bundles, rather than a single bundle
9. Objects / B. Unity of Objects / 3. Unity Problems / c. Statue and clay
A statue and its matter have different persistence conditions, so they are not identical
9. Objects / C. Structure of Objects / 7. Substratum
A substance is either a bundle of properties, or a bare substratum, or an essence
Each substance contains a non-property, which is its substratum or bare particular
The substratum theory explains the unity of substances, and their survival through change
A substratum has the quality of being bare, and they are useless because indiscernible
9. Objects / F. Identity among Objects / 7. Indiscernible Objects
At different times Leibniz articulated three different versions of his so-called Law
The Identity of Indiscernibles is false, because it is not necessarily true
16. Persons / E. Self as Mind / 2. Psychological Continuity
In continuity, what matters is not just the beginning and end states, but the process itself