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Against Purity

Barker, Jonathan (2022) Against Purity. [Preprint]

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Abstract

A fundamental fact is “pure” just in case it has no grounded entities—ex. Tokyo, President Biden, the River Nile, {Socrates}, etc.—among its constituents. Purity is the thesis that every fundamental fact is pure. I argue that Purity is false. My argument begins with a familiar conditional: if Purity is true, then there are no fundamental “grounding facts” or facts about what grounds what. This conditional is accepted by virtually all of Purity’s defenders. However, I argue that it is also the first step toward Purity’s undoing. For, if every grounding fact has a ground, then some grounded entities have “groundmates” or distinct grounded entities that share their full grounds. But, if there are groundmates, then Purity is false. So Purity leads to a contradiction. Therefore, it is false. I close by noting that my argument against Purity also gives us a powerful reason to think that some grounding facts are fundamental.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Barker, Jonathanbarkerjr@wfu.edu
Keywords: grounding, purity, fundamentality, meta-grounding, composition, infinite regress
Subjects: General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Reductionism/Holism
Depositing User: Dr. Jonathan Barker
Date Deposited: 02 Feb 2022 02:15
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2022 02:15
Item ID: 20174
Subjects: General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Reductionism/Holism
Date: 30 January 2022
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/20174

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