Chapter

Identity and Diversity

J. L. Mackie

in Problems from Locke

Published in print May 1976 | ISBN: 9780198750369
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597947 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198750366.003.0006
 Identity and Diversity

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Mackie sets out Locke's general theory of identity and raises some difficulties with the account. Hume's claim that the notion of identity is a fiction is critically assessed. Mackie argues that there is a relation between Locke's notion of identity and the notion that individuals can have essences. He presents an argument for what he calls Locke's thesis about the relativity of identity. The relevance of Kripke's discussion of identity and named individuals is examined. It is argued that Locke's thesis about the relativity of identity can provide a means of understanding some problems concerning identity through time.

Keywords: Hume; identity; individual essences; Kripke; relativity of identity

Chapter.  14130 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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