Delegation and the Logic of Location

Cody Gilmore
University of California Davis

Mereology is the field of study that (among other things) seeks to formally regiment the logic of the part-whole relation. For example, many mereological theories say that parthood is transitive: if x is a part of y and y is a part of z, then x is a part of z. Formal theories of location go beyond mereology and try to capture the logic of the location relation and its interaction with the part-whole relation. They typically include some version of the Inheritance of Location: if x is a part of y and x is located at r1 and y is located at r2, then r1 is a part of r2. 

In this talk Gilmore will focus on the "neglected little sibling" of the Inheritance of Location, which he dubs Delegation. Whereas Inheritance says that a whole must "go at least as far as any of its parts," Delegation says that a composite whole must "go no farther than its proper parts". After distinguishing weaker and stronger formalizations, Gilmore will discuss three applications of the principle: it rules out unwanted models of the formal theory of location in Parsons; it undermines one main motivation for a "fusion first" mereology given in Kleinschmidt; and it helps repair the invalid argument for "regionalism" in Markosian.

Sponsored by the philosophy department. Free and open to the public.

Friday, December 6, 2019 at 4:10pm

Performing Arts Building, 332
3203 Southeast Woodstock Boulevard, Portland, Oregon 97202-8199

Event Type



Faculty, Students, Alumni, Open to the Public, Staff

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