The Actual Parts Doctrine and the Argument from Composition

Thomas Holden

in The Architecture of Matter

Published in print July 2004 | ISBN: 9780199263264
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191601743 | DOI:
 The Actual Parts Doctrine and the Argument from Composition

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According to the actual parts doctrine, material bodies are structured aggregates or composites, compounds built out of the parts into which they can be divided. For various early moderns (including Leibniz, Hume, and Kant), this means that they are ontological parasites depending for their existence on an ultimate level of non‐composite first parts or simples. Focussing on Kant's statements of this reasoning (particularly in the 1756 Physical Monadology), reconstructs and assesses this argument from actual parts to atomic simples.

Keywords: actual parts; aggregates; composites; Hume; Kant; Leibniz; physical monadology; simples

Chapter.  16029 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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