Ideas of André Gallois, by Theme

[American, fl. 1998, Professor at Syracuse University.]

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9. Objects / B. Unity of Objects / 3. Unity Problems / b. Cat and its tail
A CAR and its major PART can become identical, yet seem to have different properties
     Full Idea: At t1 there is a whole CAR, and a PART of it, which is everything except the right front wheel. At t2 the wheel is removed, leaving just PART, so that CAR is now PART. But PART was a proper part of CAR, and CAR had the front wheel. Different properties!
     From: André Gallois (Occasions of Identity [1998], 1.II)
     A reaction: [compressed summary] The problem is generated by appealing to Leibniz's Law. My immediate reaction is that this is the sort of trouble you get into if you include such temporal truths about things as 'properties'.
9. Objects / E. Objects over Time / 1. Objects over Time
Gallois hoped to clarify identity through time, but seems to make talk of it impossible
     Full Idea: A problem for Gallois is that he leaves us no way to talk about questions of genuine identity through time, and thus undercuts one motivation for his own position.
     From: comment on André Gallois (Occasions of Identity [1998]) by Katherine Hawley - How Things Persist 5.8
     A reaction: Gallois seems to need a second theory of identity to support his Occasional Identity theory. Two things need an identity each, before we can say that the two identities coincide. (Time to read Gallois!)
If things change they become different - but then no one thing undergoes the change!
     Full Idea: If things really change, there can't literally be one thing before and after the change. However, if there isn't one thing before and after the change, then no thing has really undergone any change.
     From: André Gallois (Identity over Time [2011], Intro)
     A reaction: [He cites Copi for this way of expressing the problem of identity through change] There is an obvious simple ambiguity about 'change' in ordinary English. A change of property isn't a change of object. Painting a red ball blue isn't swapping it.
9. Objects / E. Objects over Time / 4. Four-Dimensionalism
4D: time is space-like; a thing is its history; past and future are real; or things extend in time
     Full Idea: We have four versions of Four-Dimensionalism: the relativistic view that time is space-like; a persisting thing is identical with its history (so objects are events); past and future are equally real; or (Lewis) things extend in time, with temporal parts.
     From: André Gallois (Identity over Time [2011], §2.5)
     A reaction: Broad proposed the second one. I prefer 3-D: at any given time a thing is wholly present. At another time it is wholly present despite having changed. It is ridiculous to think that small changes destroy identity. We acquire identity by dying??
9. Objects / F. Identity among Objects / 3. Relative Identity
Gallois is committed to identity with respect to times, and denial of simple identity
     Full Idea: Gallois's core claim is that the identity relation holds with respect to times, ...and he must claim that there is no such thing as the relation of identity simpliciter.
     From: report of André Gallois (Occasions of Identity [1998]) by Theodore Sider - Four Dimensionalism 5.5
     A reaction: Gallois is essentially responding to the statue and clay problem, but it seems a bit drastic to entirely change our concept of two things being identical, such as Hesperus and Phosphorus. 'Identity' seems to have several meanings; let's sort them out.
9. Objects / F. Identity among Objects / 6. Identity between Objects
Occasional Identity: two objects can be identical at one time, and different at others
     Full Idea: Gallois' Occasional Identity Thesis is that objects can be identical at one time without being identical at all times.
     From: report of André Gallois (Occasions of Identity [1998]) by Katherine Hawley - How Things Persist 5.4
     A reaction: The analogy is presumably with two crossing roads being identical at one place but not at others. It is a major misunderstanding to infer from Special Relativity that time is just like space.
If two things are equal, each side involves a necessity, so the equality is necessary
     Full Idea: The necessity of identity: a=b; □(a=a); so something necessarily = a; so something necessarily must equal b; so □(a=b). [A summary of the argument of Marcus and Kripke]
     From: André Gallois (Identity over Time [2011], §3)
     A reaction: [Lowe 1982 offered a response] The conclusion seems reasonable. If two things are mistakenly thought to be different, but turn out to be one thing, that one thing could not possibly be two things. In no world is one thing two things!