Models for Hylomorphism
Em: Journal of Philosophical Logic
In a series of papers (Fine et al., 1982; Fine, Noûs, 28(2), 137–158; 1994, Midwest Studies in Philosophy, 23, 61–74, 1999) Fine develops his hylomorphic theory of embodiments. In this article, we supply a formal semantics for this theory that is adequate to the principles laid down for it in (Midwest Studies in Philosophy, 23, 61–74, 1999). In Section 1, we lay out the theory of embodiments as Fine presents it. In Section 2, we argue on Cantorian grounds that the theory needs to be stabilized, and sketch some ways forward, discussing various choice points in modeling the view. In Section 3, we develop a formal semantics for the theory of embodiments by constructing embodiments in stages and restricting the domain of the second-order quantifiers. In Section 4 we give a few illustrative examples to show how the models deliver Finean hylomorphic consequences. In Section 5, we prove that Fine’s principles are sound with respect to this semantics. In Section 6 we present some inexpressibility results concerning Fine’s various notions of parthood and show that in our formal semantics these notions are all expressible using a single mereological primitive. In Section 7, we prove several mereological results stemming from the model theory, showing that the mereology is surprisingly robust. In Section 8, we draw some philosophical lessons from the formal semantics, and in particular respond to Koslicki’s (2008) main objection to Fine’s theory. In the appendix we present proofs of the inexpressibility results of Section 6.