The aim of this course is to introduce students to some of the core topics of contemporary metaphysics. We will look at arguments having to do with the nature of ordinary objects, the relationships between parts and wholes, time and the paradoxes of time travel, whether abstract objects exist, and the nature of metaphysical explanation. The course will approach these topics from the perspective of both western and eastern philosophical traditions.
A course reader will be made available.
One essay and one examination.
Week 1: What is metaphysics?
Week 2: Mereology
Week 3: Identity
Week 4: Emptiness
Week 5: Endurantism
Week 6: Perdurantism
Week 7: Paradoxes of time travel
Week 8: Modality
Week 9: Abstract objects
Week 10: Realism and anti-realism
Week 11: Metaphysical dependence and grounding
Week 12: Metaphysical explanation