Why Composition Matters

Andrew M. Bailey, Andrew Brenner*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Many say that ontological disputes are defective because they are unimportant or without substance. In this paper, we defend ontological disputes from the charge, with a special focus on disputes over the existence of composite objects. Disputes over the existence of composite objects, we argue, have a number of substantive implications across a variety of topics in metaphysics, science, philosophical theology, philosophy of mind, and ethics. Since the disputes over the existence of composite objects have these substantive implications, they are themselves substantive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)934-949
Number of pages16
JournalCanadian Journal of Philosophy
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Philosophy

User-Defined Keywords

  • Composition
  • material objects
  • mereology
  • metametaphysics
  • substantivity


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