Angles (and Holes)

Our second seminar in the Keele Philosophy Forum Summer Series was givenInstallation by Roberts by Dr Phillip (Phil) Meadows on 19 May. (The paper can be downloaded Here!) The aim of the paper is to show that holes are not objects, but properties (or relations). The starting point is an argument that angles are not objects, but properties. The next step demonstrates that holes and angles are in the same category as far as their ontological status is concerned. These two steps suffice for one to conclude that holes are not objects, but properties or relations.

One interesting claim of the paper is that the argument can be made without a specific commitment to an account of the fundamental categories of things. This is important, since there are ongoing debates on this issue, so an argument which can be neutral towards the various positions involved in the debate will be quite strong.

To be sure, Phil adds, to show that holes are not objects, but properties, implies to assume at least an ontological distinction between objects and properties and, hence, an assumption that this distinction is correct. Yet, two influential current ontological systems accept this distinction (Armstrong’s two-category ontology and Lowe’s four-category ontology), so the argument will be neutral at least insofar as these systems are concerned. Read more