The ontological parsimony of mereology
Research output: Contribution to journal › Article
David Lewis (Parts of classes, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, 1991, 84) famously argued that mereology is ontologically innocent. Many who have considered this claim believe he was mistaken. Mereology is not innocent, because its acceptance entails the acceptance of sums, new objects that were not previously part of one’s ontology. This argument, the argument from ontological parsimony, has two versions: a qualitative and a quantitative one. I argue that the defender of mereology can neutralize both arguments by holding that, given mereology, a commitment to the parts of an object is not an extra ontological commitment, made in addition to the commitment to the object; and that if the parts of an object are ‘ontologically innocent’, then sums cannot fail to be innocent either.
|Research areas and keywords||
Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
No data available
Related research output
Jeroen Smid, 2017, 226 p.
Research output: Thesis › Doctoral Thesis (compilation)