Non-Spatial Matters: On the Possibility of Non-Spatial Material Objects (Forthcoming) Synthese. 

(Pre-Print / Published Verstion)

Abstract. While there is considerable disagreement on the precise nature of material objecthood, it is standardly assumed that material objects must be spatial. In this paper, I provide two arguments against this assumption. The first argument is made from largely a priori considerations about modal plenitude. The possibility of non-spatial material objects follows from commitment to certain plausible principles governing material objecthood and plausible principles regarding modal plenitude. The second argument draws from current philosophical discussions regarding theories of quantum gravity and the emergence of spacetime. When it is appreciated what possible worlds these current theories commit us to, the possibility of non-spatial material objects will follow. Thus, either route will lead us to the possibility of non-spatial material objects. The significance of this result is that we need to revise our accounts of material objecthood to both accommodate these possibilities and the theories that lead to them. 

Structural Humility. (2021) Philosophy of Science, Vol. 88, Issue 5, 860-70.

Abstract. I discuss various humility theses about individuals and intrinsic properties as discussed by authors such as David Lewis. I argue that we should accept a similar humility thesis about the world’s space-time structure regardless of which metaphysics of space-time we accept. I argue this undercuts some important motivations opting in for an ontic structural realist metaphysic.