Folk Teleology and Persistence: Debunking Folk Intuitions and Endorsing the Expertise Defense

How do ordinary material objects persist? For instance, if a rock is smashed to pieces with a hammer, does it survive the smashing? Or, if a rock is hit with a hammer and chipped, does the rock
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How do ordinary material objects persist?  For instance, if a rock is smashed to pieces with a hammer, does it survive the smashing?  Or, if a rock is hit with a hammer and chipped, does the rock survive?  What about a rowboat that has had all of its original parts replaced over the years?  Does it survive the complete replacement of parts?  What if another rowboat was built with the original parts? Which rowboat is the original, the one with all of its parts replaced or the one built from the original parts?In a forthcoming paper, I take up the issue of how the folk determine whether a material object persists through alterations.  Across a range of cases, I find that the folk operate with a teleological view of material object persistence in that they tend to judge that an object survives alterations when its function is preserved and tend to judge that an object has been destroyed when its function is destroyed.  Indeed, I find that teleological considerations infuse persistence. . .

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News source: Experimental Philosophy

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