Scattered Artifacts
Hershenov (David)
Source: Southern Journal of Philosophy 42, 2002, pp. 211-216
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Philosophers Index Abstract

    An argument is made against the existence of scattered artifacts. This claim is based on the belief that there is no compelling way to distinguish a scattered object1 such as a dissembled watch on the repairman's table from similar watch parts in the garbage that don't compose any entity. Some proposed solutions to the puzzle are rejected because they bestow too much power on the intentions of those who might reassemble the parts. Others are rejected because they imply a form of backward causation2 in which future events determine whether something in the present exists.

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