SOPhiA 2021

Salzburgiense Concilium Omnibus Philosophis Analyticis

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Programme - Talk

The mereological aspects of Substances
(Metaphysics and Ontology, )

A In the context of a descriptive metaphysics, a substance is defined as an entity that is ontologically independent concerning its existence (Fine, 1995) and/or its identity (Lowe, 2001; Gorman, 2012). Thus, various entities that exhibit ontological independence fall into the category of substance (Simons, 2014). From these ideas is build the ontological independence thesis. Concerning this, Patrick Toner (2011) presents a series of questionings from which the ontological independence thesis is inadequate to account for the category of substance consistently. This research aims to propose a definition of what it is to be a substance that consistently allows accounting for the category of substance. In pursuit of this objective, the mereological aspects of a paradigmatic substance (Correia, 2005) are evaluated to construct an initial definition of what it is to be a substance in terms of its component parts. Specifically, under a mereological pluralist framework, it is argued that substances are generated for structural composition (Fine, 2010; Koslicki, 2014; Sattig; 2019). Hence a substance can be defined as a structural whole, i.e., the conditions of existence of the whole contemplate the type and organization of the entity's components parts. Finally, it is exposed how this proposal, unlike the ontological independence thesis, is immune to Toner_s questioning.

Chair: Bogdan Dumitrescu
Time: 10:40-11:10, 11 September 2021 (Saturday)
Location: SR 1.003
Remark: (Online Talk)

Angelo Briones 
(University of Buenos Aires, )



Testability and Meaning deco