List journal issues    
 
 
Home List journal issues Table of contents Subscribe to APQ

Article

Volume 51 • Number 4

October 2014



 

 

It's a Jumble Out There: How Talk of Levels Leads Us Astray


by Amie L. Thomasson


One often hears talk about some entities being "higher-level" than others: social and cultural objects, for example, are often said to be "higher-level" entities than organisms; mental properties are often said to be "higherlevel" than physical or neurological properties; and so on. Sometimes this is expressed as the idea that reality comes in ontological levels, strata of being (Morgan 1923; Post 1991; Poland 1994; Baker 2007).

I will argue, however, that metaphysics is better off without making use of the idea of "levels." The levels metaphor is misleading and can generate pseudo-questions and pseudo-problems.


view PDF
 

 

 

 
Home | Issue Index
 
© 2014 by the Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois
Content in American Philosophical Quarterly is intended for personal, noncommercial use only. You may not reproduce, publish, distribute, transmit, participate in the transfer or sale of, modify, create derivative works from, display, or in any way exploit the American Philosophical Quarterly database in whole or in part without the written permission of the copyright holder.

American Philosophical Quarterly is published by the University of Illinois Press on behalf of North American Philosophical Publications.

ISSN: 2152-1123