Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The metaphysics of possibility : could there have been nothing?
Author: Coggins, Geraldine Philomena
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2002
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
My project involves looking at the metaphysics of possibility. There are two questions that are central to the metaphysics of possibility: firstly, what are possible worlds and secondly, is there an empty possible world. Possibilist and actualist accounts of worlds attempt to answer the first question while discussions of metaphysical nihilism, the empty world and the modal ontological arguments deal with the second. However no one has systematically considered how the answers given to one of these questions affect the answers available to the other - this is my project. I develop a new way of categorising theories of possible worlds. I argue that metaphysical nihilism (the claim that there could have been nothing), in all its published forms, is incompatible with each of the fully worked out, robust accounts of possible worlds available. I point out the importance of using the correct criterion of concreteness in discussions of metaphysical nihilism. I argue that if we modify the account of abstract objects used by the metaphysical nihilists, then nihilism can be shown to be compatible with the ersatz account of possible worlds. Finally, I argue that given these considerations, Lowe’s arguments against the nihilist are more plausible than nihilism itself.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available