Mereology & Identity

Synthese, Special Issue CFP

Deadline: May 31 2018

Editors: Massimiliano Carrara, Giorgio Lando

Call for Papers

We invite submissions of original papers for a special issue of Synthese, whose title is “Mereology and Identity”.

The special issue will focus on the relation among parthood, composition and identity and will be edited by Massimiliano Carrara (University of Padua) and Giorgio Lando (University of L’Aquila).

Scientific Aims

The contemporary debate on mereology is largely hinged on the notion of identity. Indeed, classical mereology dictates that complex entities are identical if and only if they have the same proper parts. On the other hand, many scholars who doubt the adequacy of classical mereology point to real or fictional cases in which different wholes would have the same proper parts.

The friends of the so-called doctrine of Composition as Identity think that identity, or a relation analogous to identity, also connects a whole with its parts. By contrast, the foes of this doctrine retort that composition fails to respect some pivotal principles that hold for standard identity, such as the Indiscerniblity of Identicals, coreferentiality or transitivity. Finally, in the debate about Composition as Identity, the so-called Sider-Yi Collapse seems to show that some roles sometimes attributed to identity in this debate are incompatible with the standard characterization of plural identity.

Aim of the issue is to give innovative solutions to the following open problems concerning mereology and identity. We welcome submissions on any of the following topics:

a) Is there any inferential or evidential connection between Composition as Identity and mereological principles?

b) Does the debate between monism and dualism in the theory of constitution really concern mereology? Is dualism compatible or incompatible with mereological extensionalism?

c) Is it possible and interesting to combine mereological extensionalism and/or Composition as Identity with non-standard doctrines of identity, such as relative identity or milder forms of pluralism about identity?

d) What does the Yi/Sider Collapse show about the application of plural logic to mereology?

e) How do the appeals to the Indiscernibility of Identicals in the debate about Composition as Identity differ from the appeals to the Indiscernibility of Identicals in the debate about the theory of constitution?

f) Is Composition as Identity compatible with non-standard mereologies, or with pluralist theories of parthood?

g) According to Composition as Identity the Principle of Indiscernibility of Identicals can be extended to composition, by resorting to broadly Fregean relativizations of cardinality ascriptions. How is this relativization achieved?

Practical Informations

The deadline for the submission of the papers is May 31st 2018. The papers should be prepared for blind review and submitted through Synthese editorial manager. Here you can find some instructions. Please also look at the Instructions for Authors in the Synthese website.

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