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Title: The Restricted Composition of Material Objects
Author: Effingham, Nicholas James
ISNI:       0000 0001 3441 6723
Awarding Body: The University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2007
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The Special Composition Question asks for the jointly necessary and sufficient conditions for some material objects (say, some wooden slats) to compose a further material object (say,. a cupboard). The most popular philosophical answer is universalism: that the material objects always compose a further material object. This thesis attempts to rebut universalism, leaving me to take the more 'common-sense' positionth~t composition is restricted - that it sometimes takes place, and sometimes does not. Towards that end I offer my own response to the Special Composition . . Question: that the material objects compose a further object if and only if the object they composed would be causally efficacious. At each stage I tie these issues into the metaphysics of persistence i.e. whether objects 'endure' or 'perdure'. §l is a general introduction, with a list ofmy assumptions. §2 is an expositio~ofmereology (the logic of part and .whole), chorology (the logic of location), the theories of persistence. (endurantism/perdurantism) and some miscellaneous - but)mportant - issues in composition. In§3 - §5 I attempt to refute universalism. Given that there is an intuitive cost attached to universalism (such as the existence of the Eiffel Mahal - that whacky composite object composed out of the Eiffel Tower and the Taj Mahal), we should only accept universalism if there is sqme benefit in doing so. In those three chapters I look at each alledged benefit, and argue that they fail to motivate universalism, thus we should conclude th~t it is false. In §6 I motivate my own answer, and argue that contrary to first appearances it is not trivial and entails that a very popular position in metaphysics - the combination of perdurantism with the standard perdurantist analysis of temporary intrinsics must be false.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available