University of Leeds
School of Philosophy, Religion, and History of Science
PhD, 2008
  •  1
    The Foundation of Reality: Fundamentality, Space, and Time (edited book)
    Oxford University Press. 2020.
    Are space and time fundamental features of our world or might they emerge from something else? The Foundation of Reality brings together metaphysicians and philosophers of physics working on space, time, and fundamentality to address this timely question.
  •  161
    Relational Holism and Humean Supervenience
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 63 (4): 773-788. 2012.
    It has been widely noted that Humean supervenience , according to which everything supervenes on intrinsic properties of point-sized things and the spatiotemporal relations between them, is at odds with the nonlocal character of quantum mechanics, according to which not everything supervenes on intrinsic properties of point-sized things and the spatiotemporal relations between them. In particular, a standard view is that the parts of a composite quantum system instantiate further relations which…Read more
  •  717
    Modelling Deep Indeterminacy
    Synthese 1-26. 2019.
    This paper constructs a model of metaphysical indeterminacy that can accommodate a kind of ‘deep’ worldly indeterminacy that arguably arises in quantum mechanics via the Kochen-Specker theorem, and that is incompatible with prominent theories of metaphysical indeterminacy such as that in Barnes and Williams (2011). We construct a variant of Barnes and Williams's theory that avoids this problem. Our version builds on situation semantics and uses incomplete, local situations rather than possible w…Read more
  •  1
    _Thinking about Science, Reflecting on Art: Bringing Aesthetics and Philosophy of Science togethe_r is the first book to systematically examine the relationship between the philosophy of science and aesthetics. With contributions from leading figures from both fields this edited collection engages with such questions as: Does representation function in the same way in science and in art? What important characteristic do scientific models share with literary fictions? What is the difference betwe…Read more
  •  202
    Indeterminacy in its various forms has been the focus of a great deal of philosophical attention in recent years. Much of this discussion has focused on the status of vague predicates such as ‘tall’, ‘bald’, and ‘heap’. It is determinately the case that a seven-foot person is tall and that a five-foot person is not tall. However, it seems difficult to pick out any determinate height at which someone becomes tall. How best to account for this phenomenon is, of course, a controversial matter. For …Read more
  •  36
    In Defense of the Metaphysics of Entanglement
    In David Glick, George Darby & Anna Marmodoro (eds.), The Foundation of Reality: Fundamentality, Space, and Time, Oxford University Press. forthcoming.
    Quantum entanglement has long been thought to be have deep metaphysical consequences. For example, it has been claimed to show that Humean supervenience is false or to involve a novel form of ontological holism. One way to avoid confronting the metaphysical consequences is to adopt some form of antirealism. In this paper we discuss two prominent strands in recent literature—wavefunction realism and “Super-Humeanism”—that appear quite different, but, as we see it, are instances of a more general …Read more
  •  8
    This paper considers two aspects of Lewis's metaphysics to which spatiotemporal relations appear central, with the aim of showing them to be less so. First, Lewis reluctantly characterises what it is for two things to be part of the same possible world in terms of an analogically spatiotemporal category of relations, rather than a wider natural external category. But Lewis's reason for restricting himself to the narrower category is unpersuasive. Second, Humean supervenience is formulated with s…Read more
  •  57
    This paper explores some of the consequences of quantum entanglement for the mainstream metaphysician. The basic idea that entanglement has metaphysical consequences in the form of some kind of “holism” is familiar in the philosophy of physics literature, and finds its way into recent metaphysics, in discussions of failure of Humean supervenience, monism and emergence, for example. The principle aim here is to highlight some questions of detail that occur when attempting to make contact with tho…Read more
  •  115
    Lewis's Principle of Recombination: Reply to Efird and Stoneham
    with Duncan Watson
    Dialectica 64 (3): 435-445. 2010.
    According to Lewis's modal realism, all ways the world could be are represented by possible worlds, and all possible worlds represent some way the world could be. That there are just the right possible worlds to represent all and only the ways the world could be is to be guaranteed by the principle of recombination. Lewis sketches the principle (put roughly: anything can co-exist with anything else), but does not spell out a precise version that generates just the right possibilities. David Efir…Read more
  • What’s Wrong with Microphysicalism?: Andreas Hüttemann (review)
    Humana Mente 4 (19). 2011.
  •  126
    This paper considers two aspects of Lewis 's metaphysics to which spatiotemporal relations appear central, with the aim of showing them to be less so. First, Lewis reluctantly characterises what it is for two things to be part of the same possible world in terms of an analogically spatiotemporal category of relations, rather than a wider natural external category. But Lewis 's reason for restricting himself to the narrower category is unpersuasive. Second, Humean supervenience is formulated with…Read more
  •  180
    Quantum Mechanics and Metaphysical Indeterminacy
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (2): 227-245. 2010.
    There has been recent interest in formulating theories of non-representational indeterminacy. The aim of this paper is to clarify the relevance of quantum mechanics to this project. Quantum-mechanical examples of vague objects have been offered by various authors, displaying indeterminate identity, in the face of the famous Evans argument that such an idea is incoherent. It has also been suggested that the quantum-mechanical treatment of state-dependent properties exhibits metaphysical indetermi…Read more