Erkenntnis

, Volume 78, Issue 5, pp 1177–1184

Strong Composition as Identity and Simplicity

Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10670-012-9387-2

Cite this article as:
Spencer, J. Erkenn (2013) 78: 1177. doi:10.1007/s10670-012-9387-2

Abstract

The general composition question asks “what are the necessary and jointly sufficient conditions any xs and any y must satisfy in order for it to be true that those xs compose that y?” Although this question has received little attention, there is an interesting and theoretically fruitful answer. Namely, strong composition as identity (SCAI): necessarily, for any xs and any y, those xs compose y iff those xs are identical to y. SCAI is theoretically fruitful because if it is true, then there is an answer to one of the most difficult and intractable questions of mereology (The Simple Question). In this paper, I introduce the identity account of simplicity and argue that if SCAI is true then this identity account of simplicity is as well. I consider an objection to the identity account of simplicity. Ultimately, I find this objection unsuccessful.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of Wisconsin–MilwaukeeMilwaukeeUSA