NEH logo
[Return to Query]

Products for Grant FA-54195-08

FA-54195-08
A Philosophic Anaylsis of the Concept of Possibility
Boris Kment, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Grant details: https://securegrants.neh.gov/publicquery/main.aspx?f=1&gn=FA-54195-08

Haecceitism, Chance, and Counterfactuals (Article)
Title: Haecceitism, Chance, and Counterfactuals
Author: Boris Kment
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Year: 2012
Format: Journal
Periodical Title: Philosophical Review
Publisher: Duke University Press

Objectivity and the Possibility of Knowledge: A Dilemma in Modern Philosophy (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Objectivity and the Possibility of Knowledge: A Dilemma in Modern Philosophy
Abstract: Much of modern philosophy has been concerned with resolving the apparent tension between two seeming platitudes: (i) the ‘Objectivity Assumption’: the external world exists independently of us, and (ii) the ‘Cognitive Access Assumption’: we are able to acquire knowledge about the external world. This talk describes some of the theories that have been developed to address this dilemma, and argues that a successful resolution requires us to accept the existence of the synthetic a priori. An epistemology based on the principle of inference to the best explanation allows us to do that.
Author: Boris Kment
Date: 03/24/2009
Location: Institute for the Humanities, University of Michigan
Primary URL: https://editweb.lsa.umich.edu/umich/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=879f6ecb9f0de110VgnVCM100000a3b1d38dRCRD&vgnextchannel=f7fc2dac5aa8c110VgnVCM100000a3b1d38dRCRD
Secondary URL: http://lecb.physics.lsa.umich.edu/wl/carma/2008/20080923-brownbag/20090324-umwlcd0012-121321/real/f001.htm

Causation: Nomic Sufficiency and Difference-Making (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Causation: Nomic Sufficiency and Difference-Making
Abstract: Much of the modern philosophy of causation has been governed by two ideas: (i) causes make effects inevitable; (ii) a cause is something that makes a difference to whether its effect occurs. I focus on explaining the origin of idea (ii) and its connection to (i). On my view, the frequent attempts to turn (ii) into an analysis of causation are wrongheaded. Patterns of difference-making aren’t what makes causal claims true. They merely provide a useful test for causal claims. Moreover, what justifies us in using them as a test is idea (i). That’s how (i) and (ii) are connected.
Author: Boris Kment
Date: 10/12/2008
Location: Princeton University

Causation: Necessitation and Difference-Making (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Causation: Necessitation and Difference-Making
Author: Boris Kment
Abstract: Much of the modern philosophy of causation has been governed by two ideas: (i) causes make effects inevitable; (ii) a cause is something that makes a difference to whether its effect occurs. I focus on explaining the origin of idea (ii) and its connection to (i). On my view, the frequent attempts to turn (ii) into an analysis of causation are wrongheaded. Patterns of difference-making aren’t what makes causal claims true. They merely provide a useful test for causal claims. Moreover, what justifies us in using them as a test is idea (i). That’s how (i) and (ii) are connected.
Date: 01/07/2009
Conference Name: Arizona Ontology Conference

Causation: Determination and Difference-Making (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Causation: Determination and Difference-Making
Abstract: Much of the modern philosophy of causation has been governed by two ideas: (i) causes make effects inevitable; (ii) a cause is something that makes a difference to whether its effect occurs. I focus on explaining the origin of idea (ii) and its connection to (i). On my view, the frequent attempts to turn (ii) into an analysis of causation are wrongheaded. Patterns of difference-making aren’t what makes causal claims true. They merely provide a useful test for causal claims. Moreover, what justifies us in using them as a test is idea (i). That’s how (i) and (ii) are connected.
Author: Boris Kment
Date: 01/10/2010
Location: Oxford University

In Defense of Haecceitism (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: In Defense of Haecceitism
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Author: Boris Kment
Date: 05/15/2010
Location: Corridor Discussion Group, New York City

Hyperintensional Metaphysics (Course or Curricular Materials)
Title: Hyperintensional Metaphysics
Author: Shamik Dasgupta
Author: Boris Kment
Abstract: This course will investigate a number of hyperintensional concepts that have been at the center of much recent discussion in metaphysics, such as the notions of grounding, ontological dependence, metaphysical explanation, metaphysical fundamentality, reducibility, and real definition. We are planning to strike a balance between giving an overview of recent philosophical developments and talking about our own work in progress. We will begin the semester with a discussion of recent work on grounding, followed by a detailed look at a number of more specific question about the grounding relation, e.g. about its formal properties, whether facts about grounding are fundamental, and the relationship between grounding and real definition. Next, we will focus on a specific question about fundamental reality, namely whether all fundamental facts are qualitative, or whether they include facts about which specific individuals exist and how the different qualitative roles are distributed over them. We will consider the commitments, attractions and drawbacks of different possible positions on this issue. This discussion will illustrate the connections between fundamentality and reduction on the one hand and supervenience on the other. That, in turn, will serve as an introduction to our next topic: the connection between hyperintensional and modal notions. Most likely, we will discuss the thesis—propounded by Kit Fine, among others—that modal distinctions can be explained in terms of essence. We will end the seminar by looking briefly at a few other hyperintensional notions, such as truth-making and constitution.
Year: 2010
Audience: Graduate

Modal Concepts and Causal Inquiry (expected to appear in 2013) (Book)
Title: Modal Concepts and Causal Inquiry (expected to appear in 2013)
Author: Boris Kment
Abstract: Much of human thought is concerned, not with how things actually are, but with alternative possibilities (with how we could have acted, how history could have unfolded, etc.). The notion of a possibility (a way things could have been) is indispensable for common-sense thought and in the human and natural sciences. Philosophers have investigated it intensively, but its nature has proven elusive. I propose a new analysis of the notion. Unlike previous studies, mine starts from the question why creatures like us have developed the concept of a possibility. I argue that the notion originated in such practices as providing explanations and making decisions, where we ask what would be true if such-and-such were the case. This approach solves numerous problems that have beset previous analyses.
Year: 2013
Publisher: Oxford University Press

Haecceitism, Chance, and Counterfactuals (Article)
Title: Haecceitism, Chance, and Counterfactuals
Author: Boris Kment
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Year: 2012
Periodical Title: Philosophical Review

Is Fundamental Reality Purely Qualitative? (Keynote Address) (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Is Fundamental Reality Purely Qualitative? (Keynote Address)
Author: Boris Kment
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Date: 04/17/2011
Primary URL: http://www.colorado.edu/philosophy/grad_rmpc_2011.shtml
Conference Name: Rocky Mountains Philosophy Conference

Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative? (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative?
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Author: Boris Kment
Date: 10/28/2011
Location: University of Geneva

Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative? (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative?
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Author: Boris Kment
Date: 11/23/2011
Location: University of Manchester
Primary URL: http://www.socialsciences.manchester.ac.uk/disciplines/philosophy/research/seminars/

Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative? (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative?
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Author: Boris Kment
Date: 12/08/2011
Location: University of Stirling, UK

Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative? (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative?
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Author: Boris Kment
Date: 02/03/2012
Location: University of Leeds, UK
Primary URL: http://www.leeds.ac.uk/events/event/1236/

Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative? (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Are All Fundamental Facts Purely Qualitative?
Author: Boris Kment
Abstract: Some philosophers, the 'anti-individualists,' believe that all fundamental facts are purely qualitative. They could in principle be stated without mentioning any specific individual by name. Other philosophers, the 'individualists,' believe that the fundamental facts also include facts about which individuals exist and how the qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Anti-individualists are committed to the idea that all facts supervene on the qualitative facts. I argue that that thesis yields implausible consequences in the theory of chance and counterfactuals. Ultimately, individualism carries the day.
Date: 02/16/2012
Conference Name: American Philosophical Association, Annual Convention of the Central Division

Modality and Explanatory Reasoning (Book)
Title: Modality and Explanatory Reasoning
Author: Boris Kment
Abstract: na
Year: 2014
Publisher: New York: Oxford University Press
Type: Single author monograph
Copy sent to NEH?: Yes

Modal Concepts and Causal Inquiry (Book)
Title: Modal Concepts and Causal Inquiry
Author: Kment, Boris Christian
Year: 2013
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Type: Single author monograph


Permalink: https://securegrants.neh.gov/publicquery/products.aspx?gn=FA-54195-08