more from David Wiggins

Single Idea 12064

[catalogued under 14. Science / D. Explanation / 2. Types of Explanation / k. Explanations by essence]

Full Idea

For us the importance of the category of substance, if it has any importance, is not so much ontological as relative to our epistemological circumstances and the conditions under which we have to undertake inquiry.

Gist of Idea

The category of substance is more important for epistemology than for ontology


David Wiggins (Substance [1995], 4.13.2)

Book Reference

'Philosophy: a Guide Through the Subject', ed/tr. Grayling,A.C. [OUP 1995], p.244

A Reaction

This seems to be a rather significant concession. Wiggins has revived the notion of substance in recent times, but he is not quite adding it to the furniture of the world. Personally I increasingly think we can dump it, in ontology and epistemology.