This pseudo-Paper is intended as the mechanism to record time spent on the Note 'Process Metaphysics' during my Thesis research, as from December 2017. Click here for Note.
Write-up1 (as at 01/01/2018 08:36:58): Process Metaphysics
- A foundation-stone of my – and most philosophers’ – account of identity is that “things” – or at least some “things” – exist. Without things to persist, there can be no persistence and no diachronic identity.
- There have been much discussion about just which things exist, and which things make up – or compose3 – other things – see, for instance:-
→ "Hudson (Hud) - Vagueness and Composition"
→ "Markosian (Ned) - Brutal Composition"
→ "Miller (Kristie) - The Existential Quantifier, Composition and Contingency"
→ "Parsons (Josh) - Conceptual Conservatism and Contingent Composition"
And especially …
→ "Van Inwagen (Peter) - The Special Composition Question"
→ "Van Inwagen (Peter) - When are Objects Parts?"
- However, some recent papers I’ve seen on Aeon cast doubt on the existence of things, and prefer to focus on processes – in particular, biological ones. This is “process metaphysics”, or “naturalistic metaphysics”. See:-
→ "Vieira (Celso) - Which is more fundamental: processes or things?"
→ "Dupre (John) - Metaphysics of metamorphosis"
- Relevant books include:-
→ "Rescher (Nicholas) - Process Metaphysics: An Introduction to Process Philosophy"
→ "Ladyman (James), Ross (Don), Spurrett (David) & Collier (John) - Every Thing Must Go: Metaphysics Naturalized"
- Books by Alfred North Whitehead – while historically important – are not a priority in this context. Nor are those on Process Theology. Back in the previous century, around 1993, I used to attend the meetings of “The Society for Process Thought”, and corresponded frequently with its chairman, Patrick Lewin. A quick Google didn’t reveal anything about the Society, or Patrick, so maybe both are extinct. I did find an old Newsletter that mentioned both: Link, on the Conway Hall Website (Link).
- I’m not sure how much of an impact this stance has on my research. I’d already noted that animals are each individuated by a life4, itself a process.
- This is mostly a place-holder5. Currently, just see the items above and the categorised reading-list below.
- This is the write-up as it was when this Abstract was last output, with text as at the timestamp indicated (01/01/2018 08:36:58).
- Link to Latest Write-Up Note.
- A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
- I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
- As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
- The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
- I need a note on Composition.
- It is involved in – but not identical to – issues of Constitution.
Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)
- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2018