Essential Properties and Individual Essences

  title={Essential Properties and Individual Essences},
  author={Sonia Roca-Royes},
  journal={Philosophy Compass},
According to Essentialism, an object’s properties divide into those that are essential and those that are accidental. While being human is commonly thought to be essential to Socrates, being a philosopher plausibly is not. We can motivate the distinction by appealing – as we just did – to examples. However, it is not obvious how best to characterize the notion of essential property, nor is it easy to give conclusive arguments for the essentiality of a given property. In this paper, I elaborate… Expand
How Science and Semantics Settle the Issue of Natural Kind Essentialism
Standard arguments for essentialism with respect to natural kinds such as gold , star , water or tiger enlist essentialist principles or essentialist intuitions. I argue that we need neither. All itExpand
Essence, modality, and intrinsicality
A novel, interesting, but controversial modal account of essence in terms of intrinsicality and grounding is explored to clarify Kit Fine's objections and evaluate how this novel analysis of essence stands with respect to sortal, origin, and natural kinds essentialism. Expand
Essential Truths and Their Truth-Grounds
This paper motivates and defends a principle which captures a systematic connection between essence, truth, and grounding. It says that if a proposition expresses an essential truth, i.e., if it isExpand
Grounding, Essence, and Contingentism
According to grounding necessitarianism if some facts ground another fact, then the obtaining of the former necessitates the latter. Proponents of grounding contingentism argue against this claim,Expand
On how (not) to define modality in terms of essence
In his influential article ‘Essence and Modality’, Fine proposes a definition of (conceptual, logical and metaphysical) necessity in terms of the primitive essentialist notion ‘true in virtue of theExpand
On the Essence and Identity of Numbers
Taking as premises some reasonable principles about the essences of natural numbers, pluralities and sets, the paper offers two types of argument for the conclusions that the natural numbers couldExpand
Paradigm Terms: The Necessity of Kind Term Identifications Generalized
Standard Kripke-Putnam semantics is widely taken to entail that theoretical identifications like ‘Brontosauruses are Apatosauruses’ or ‘Gold is 79Au’ are necessary, if true. I offer a new diagnosisExpand
Individual Essence: gibt es solche?
Two arguments are offered here for postulating individual essences of concrete individuals on top of their sortal essences. One is the explanatory gap argument, the other draws on the analogy withExpand
Between Meaning and Essence - Explaining Necessary Truth
An explanation of why some truths are necessarily true needs to make intelligible how it is that a truth is guaranteed to be true. The thesis argues that a promising starting point for an explanationExpand
The Problem of Transworld Identity: in Defence of Essentialism
In this article, the problem of transworld identity – that is the question, if and how it is possible to ground the intuition that the same individual exists in more than one possible world – isExpand


Primitive Thisness and Primitive Identity
Is the world—and are all possible worlds—constituted by purely qualitative facts, or does thisness hold a place beside suchness as a fundamental feature of reality? Some famous philosophers—Leibniz,Expand
Essence, Origin and Bare Idenlity
It is natural to think of the identities of objects of various sorts, including some familiar kinds of persisting thing, as in a certain sense supervenient on other facts. In the first part of thisExpand
A problem for a posteriori essentialism concerning natural kinds
There is a widespread assumption that the classical work in philosophical semantics of Saul Kripke (1980) and Hilary Putnam (1975) has taught us that the essences of natural kinds of substances, suchExpand
Possibilities and the arguments for origin essentialism
In this paper, I examine the case that has been made for origin essentialism and find it wanting. I focus on the arguments of Nathan Salmon and Graeme Forbes. Like most origin essentialists, SalmonExpand
Resurrecting Biological Essentialism*
The article defends the doctrine that Linnaean taxa, including species, have essences that are, at least partly, underlying intrinsic, mostly genetic, properties. The consensus among philosophers ofExpand
Historical Kinds and the “Special Sciences”
I do not believe there are any "special sciences" in Fodor's sense. I think that there is a large group of sciences I will call them "historical sciences" that differ fundamentally from the physicalExpand
Natural Kinds and Natural Kind Terms
The aim of this article is to illustrate how a belief in the existence of kinds may be justified for the particular case of natural kinds: particularly noteworthy in this respect is the weight borneExpand
Essence and Modality
The principal axiom for abstract objects, described in more detail below, is a comprehension principle that asserts the conditions under which abstract objects exist and encode properties: for any expressible condition 4 that is satisfiable by properties F, there exists an abstract object that encodes exactly the properties F satisfying. Expand
Finean) Essence and (Priorean) Modality
In Fine 1994, Kit Fine challenges the (widespread) view that the notion of essence is to be understood in terms of the metaphysical modalities, and he argues that it is not essence which reduces toExpand
IV—Identity, Time, and Necessity
The paper offers an explanation of the intuitive appeal of Saul Kripke's necessity of origin thesis, exhibiting it as the consequence of a temporally asymmetrical 'branching model' of possibilitiesExpand