Material composition and theory choice

Jared Woodard, Fordham University


The thesis of this text is that the best theory about material composition is mereological nihilism, the theory according to which material composition does not occur. The reason nihilism is more likely to be true is that it explains our evidence as well as any other theory, but does so more simply, and simplicity is an indicator of truth. A secondary thesis is that, in cases where philosophical debates appear otherwise intractable, progress can be made by evaluating those debates using a theory choice methodology borrowed from the philosophy and history of the sciences.

Subject Area

Epistemology|Metaphysics|Philosophy of Science

Recommended Citation

Woodard, Jared, "Material composition and theory choice" (2013). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI3564984.