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The Structure of Objects$
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Kathrin Koslicki

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199539895

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199539895.001.0001

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In Defense of Kinds

In Defense of Kinds

(p.200) VIII In Defense of Kinds
The Structure of Objects

Kathrin Koslicki (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter defends a commitment to an ontology of kinds for the special case of natural kinds; such a commitment plays an important role in motivating and underwriting the structure-based and restricted conception of parthood and composition outlined in the previous chapter. The special case of natural kinds is intended as an illustration of how a commitment to a certain class of kinds in general, or to specific kinds among them, may be generated on the basis of extra-mereological considerations. The belief in the existence of natural kinds, for example, may be supported by an appeal to their role in prediction and explanation; particularly noteworthy in this respect is the weight borne by scientific natural kinds (e.g., physical, chemical and biological kinds) in (i) inductive arguments, (ii) the laws of nature, and (iii) causal explanations.

Keywords:   natural kinds, induction, projectibility, laws of nature, causation, physical kinds, chemical kinds, biological kinds, species, individuals

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