A Combinatorial Theory of Possibility
David Armstrong's book is a contribution to the philosophical discussion about possible worlds. Taking Wittgenstein's Tractatus as his point of departure, Professor Armstrong argues that nonactual possibilities and possible worlds are recombinations of actually existing elements, and as such are useful fictions. There is an extended criticism of the alternative-possible-worlds approach championed by the American philosopher David Lewis. This major work will be read with interest by a wide range of philosophers.
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The causal argument
NonNaturalist theories of possibility
A COMBINATORIAL AND NATURALIST ACCOUNT OF POSSIBILITY
Possibility in a simple world
Expanding and contracting the world
Are there de re incompatibilities and necessities?
Higherorder entities negation and causation
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actual world Actualist admit affairs aggregate alien universals analysed argued causal Causal argument Chapter Combinatorial principles Combinatorial theory Combinatorialist conjunction Consider constituents contingent David Lewis deny disjunctive distinct existences doxastically possible worlds entities Fictionalist first-order haecceity higher-order holds Hume identity incompatibilities indi indiscernible worlds instance instantiated intensive quantities internal relation involve island universes kilogram kilogram in mass Leibniz Lewis's theory logical Logical Atomism mathematical truth maximally consistent set merely possible worlds mereological metaphysical modal n-tuple natural numbers Naturalist necessary truth neuron nomic Nominalist non-Naturalist theories notion objects ontological particular perhaps philosophers plausible possible worlds posteriori postulate priori problem properties and relations propositions quantities Realist reason reject rela relational property relative atoms resemblance Russell Section seems sense set theory simple individuals simple properties Skyrms sort space-time spatio-temporal suggest supervenient Suppose theory of possibility things tion Tractarian Nominalism true truth-maker unit-property viduals wholly distinct