Kathrin Koslicki's Argument Analysis

Amazing Essays
In my book Four-dimensionalism (chapter 4, section 9), I argued that four- dimensionalism – the doctrine of temporal parts – follows from several other premises, chief among which is the premise that existence is never vague. Kathrin Koslicki (preceding article) claims that the argument fails since its crucial premise is unsupported, and is dialectically inappropriate to assume in the context of arguing for four-dimensionalism.
Since the relationship between four-dimensionalism and the non-vagueness of existence is not perfectly transparent, I think the argument would retain some interest even if the premise were wholly unsupported; it would show that anyone who accepts that premise (which seems reasonable enough to me though perhaps not to others) must accept four-dimensionalism. Still, Koslicki is right that my defense of the premise was thin. So I will now try to do better. The new defense will have further premises, which could ultimately be rejected by opponents of four-dimensionalism, and so the argument retains the form: anyone who thinks certain things
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I agree with much of it;1 and where we disagree there are formidable challenges, some of which I hope to address in the future.
∗This paper began as a reply to Kathrin Koslicki’s paper “The Crooked Path from Vagueness to Four-Dimensionalism” at the third annual Bellingham Summer Philosophy Conference. I thank John Hawthorne, Eli Hirsch, Kathrin Koslicki, Ned Markosian, Ryan Wasserman and Dean Zimmerman for helpful comments.
1In particular I agree with the claim in the nal two sections that four-dimensionalism in some sense cheapens questions about the persistence of ordinary objects, makes them less strictly ontological. My belief is that this is, in the end, the correct view of the matter, but Koslicki is right to draw attention to its con ict with ordinary

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