Philosophy Lexicon of Arguments

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Supervenience, philosophy of mind: supervenience is an expression for a restricted dependency between areas. Elements of a region B are dependent on changes of elements of an area A, but not vice versa. Supervenience is used by some authors to explain the relationship between mental and physical processes. The assumption of a supervenience serves to circumvent more powerful assumptions like, e.g. the identity theory. See also covariance, dependency, identity theory, materialism, reductionism.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

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I 10
Supervenience/Stalnaker: is a conceptual tool for the separation of the purely metaphysical part of a reductionist thesis. - A set of facts or properties supervenes on another one if possible worlds or possible individuals who are identical in relation to one property, are also necessarily identical in another property.
I 11
It is supposed to disconnect semantic from metaphysical questions.
I 87
Supervenience: a) reductionist - b) non-reductionist. - ((s) But in any case not semantic as a variant of reductionism.
I 98f
Supervenience: Ethics: relation of natural and judgmental properties. - Moore: pro this distinction. - Stalnaker: if supervenience distinguishes natural and judgmental properties, it is no reduction. - Because it does not isolate the metaphysical component of a theory.
I 90
Supervenience is sometimes used instead of emergence.
I 91
Def weak Supervenience: within a possible world - Strong S: within one or in different possible worlds - global S: if any two possible worlds, which are B-indistinguishable, are also A-indistinguishable. - Global S: must be improved - like this, it is not even sufficient for weak S.
I 93
Indistinguishable in terms of a mapping function from one possible world to another.
I 99
Supervenience: is contingent. - E.g. Lewis: print image of black dots. - If we add a few colored dots, two pictures can differ in the global properties without differing in the distribution of the (black) dots. - Global property: E.g. symmetry: more general: the same global properties that supervene in the monochrome image on the distribution of dots (E.g. symmetry) are also applied to things other than monochrome print images, and because of this broader applicability, they can not be defined as a global property (E.g. symmetry) through the print image.
I 99
Supervenience: the properties that we call supervenient are the abstract ones.
I 101
SchifferVsSupervenience: as a metaphysical thesis it is mysterious.
I 103
Humean Supervenience/HS/Materialism: Thesis: laws and causal powers supervene on regularities. - Humean Supervenience: needs criteria for cross world identity.
I 104
Supervenience: Thesis: all facts are facts about current states. - The rest is a matter of speech.
I 105
Infinite/language/Stronger/Weaker/Supervenience/Stalnaker: an assumed infinite language provides too weak a supervenience, because then you can define arbitrary properties.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.

Sta I
R. Stalnaker
Ways a World may be Oxford New York 2003

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2017-11-22