Chapter

Universals

John Heil

in The Universe As We Find It

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199596201
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741876 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199596201.003.0005
Universals

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This chapter defends the view that properties are modes. The historical standing of universals is addressed and determined to be the minority view. D.C. Williams’s use of the term ‘trope’ is discussed, and considerations favoring the traditional ‘mode’ over ‘trope’ advanced, followed by an account of Williams’s ‘painless realism’ concerning universals: any particular property can be considered as a way something else might be. This allows for talk about universals without requiring the postulation of general or universal entities: the universe is a universe of particulars. The chapter concludes with some historical reflections on Santayana, Williams, and David Lewis.

Keywords: property; universal; mode; trope; way; painless realism; Williams; Santayana; Lewis

Chapter.  12514 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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