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Frontiers of Philosophy in China

Front. Philos. China    2016, Vol. 11 Issue (2) : 250-262
Orginal Article |
What Is Not So Fine with Fine’s Critique of the Modal Account of Essence
HE Chaoan()
School of Humanities, Donghua University, Shanghai 201620, China
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The invention of contemporary model theories of quantified modal logic gives substance to the modal account of essence. Kit Fine developed an incisive argument against the modal account. It is argued here that the Finean counterexamples all rest on a certain consideration of irrelevance and the challenge could be met in a uniform way. There is a distinction to be drawn between epistemological identification essence and metaphysical identity essence. The former accommodates the intuitive appeal of the Finean cases and the latter grounds the feasibility of the modal account. An object-reflexive method is introduced to rephrase the counterexamples and to rehabilitate the otherwise inscrutable metaphysical relevance.

Keywords essence      modal account      relevance      identity     
Issue Date: 21 July 2016
 Cite this article:   
HE Chaoan. What Is Not So Fine with Fine’s Critique of the Modal Account of Essence[J]. Front. Philos. China, 2016, 11(2): 250-262.
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