Natural Kinds and Nominal Kinds
Schwartz (Stephen P.)
Source: Mind, 89, No. 354 (Apr., 1980), pp. 182-195
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Philosophers Index Abstract

    The distinction between natural kind1 terms and nominal kind terms is elaborated. A criterion for determining whether a general noun is a natural kind2 term or a nominal kind term is suggested. Natural kind3 terms are just the sort of terms that are subject terms of statements such as 'water is H2O' or 'tigers are animals'. That is those statements that were demonstrated to be necessarily true if true, synthetic, and a posteriori by Kripke and Putnam. These statements are called stable generalizations. A nominal kind term is never the subject of any stable generalization. This criterion is then used to disentangle an example of Putnam's.

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