|Continuants: temporally extended entities as opposed to events or occurrences. There is a debate about whether continuants themselves can have temporal parts. See also endurantism, perdurantism, ontology, person, four-dimensionalism.|
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Continuants/Identity/Identification/Whole/Millikan: we are dealing here with two problems that need to be distinguished:
1. The problem of the identity of a whole.
2. The problem of the identification of an object as a whole. How do we come to regard some things as whole, others only as parts of other things?
Answer: by the way of composition. It is clear that parts of an object are never identical.
Part/Whole/Relation/Part relation/Mereology/Millikan: The relation of a part to the whole or the parts to one another is never identity. And it has nothing to do with identity either.
Question: Does the analogy between temporal and spatial parts help us? Surprisingly yes!
Part/Whole/Millikan: the problems, which seem to be first the problems of identity, almost all of them appear as a problem of the part/whole relation.
This is abbout the principles of union or unity.
R. G. Millikan
Language, Thought, and Other Biological Categories: New Foundations for Realism Cambridge 1987