more from Robert C. Stalnaker

Single Idea 12765

[catalogued under 10. Modality / E. Possible worlds / 3. Transworld Objects / a. Transworld identity]

Full Idea

I cannot think of any point in making the counterfactual supposition that Babe Ruth is a billiard ball; there is nothing I can say about him in that imagined state that I could not just as well say about billiard balls that are not him.

Gist of Idea

Why imagine that Babe Ruth might be a billiard ball; nothing useful could be said about the ball


Robert C. Stalnaker (Anti-essentialism [1979], p.79)

Book Reference

Stalnaker,Robert C.: 'Ways a World Might Be' [OUP 2003], p.79

A Reaction

A bizarrely circumspect semanticists way of saying that Ruth couldn't possibly be a billiard ball! Would he say the same about a group of old men in wheelchairs, one of whom IS Babe Ruth?