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Institutional Identity

The very excellent Joshua Rust has made this paper published in Journal of Social Ontology freely available. Derek Parfit famously sought to illuminate his account of personal identity by comparing a person to a club. If Parfit could use our intuitions about clubs to help motivate his neo-Lockean account of personal identity over time, which resists…

David Wiggins

Born on this day — a true gentleman in every sense. If ever Wiggins was miffed that I preferred to talk to him about his metaphysics rather than his ethics, he never let on. Sameness and Substance Renewed (2001) and its two precursors, 1967’s Identity and Spatio-Temporal Continuity and 1980’s Sameness and Substance, jointly remain one of my favourite reads. See discussion of…

Walker Percy Wednesday 176

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A SYMBOLIC ASSERTION AND A SPACE-TIME EVENT If one examines the characteristic moments of the scientific method, one will discover that they are basically assertions. Even if one happens to be an operationalist and maintains that the business of science is defining the physical operations by which concepts are arrived at and…

Identity, Individuation and Substance

After a long break from writing on metaphysics the wonderful David Wiggins has a freely available paper published in the European Journal of Philosophy. Sameness and Substance remains one of the most satisfying  (and most difficult) reads I’ve ever experienced. Forty four years ago I published a short monograph called Identity and Spatio-Temporal Continuity, henceforth ISTC…

Performance

Though it’s going on 40 years since Performance was made (1968, released in 1970) it is still the most modern of films with “adult themes” (philosophical and otherwise) from an age when films weren’t primarily made for fuckwits. The themes of social, sexual and gender identity make the fuss being made about these issues now seem so tired…