課程資訊
課程名稱
後設形上學
Metametaphysics 
開課學期
107-2 
授課對象
文學院  哲學研究所  
授課教師
鄧敦民 
課號
Phl7791 
課程識別碼
124 M7860 
班次
 
學分
3.0 
全/半年
半年 
必/選修
選修 
上課時間
星期三8,9,10(15:30~18:20) 
上課地點
哲研討室三 
備註
本課程中文授課,使用英文教科書。B領域。
總人數上限:15人 
Ceiba 課程網頁
http://ceiba.ntu.edu.tw/1072metametaphysics 
課程簡介影片
 
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課程概述

形上學會探究關於存在與實在的問題,而形上學家時常會爭辯著某類東西是否存在,或某類現象是否是實在的。然而,這些爭辯常常會顯得十分像是在雞同鴨講。例如,當「組成虛無論」(mereological nihilism)否認桌子椅子的存在,卻不反對日常語言中關於桌子椅子的宣稱,我們似乎會覺得他們只是把「存在」用了和中文「存在」很不一樣的字義。又例如,當「不相容論」(incompatibilism)與「相容論」(compatibilism)在爭辯自由意志與決定論是否相容時,我們似乎也覺得他們只是擁有著不同的「自由」概念而已。但若是如此,這些形上學爭辯就不會是關於客觀實在的「實質爭議」(substantial issues),而只不過是關於我們的字詞與概念的「字面之爭」(verbal issues)。但果真如此嗎?

就算形上學爭辯真的是實質之爭,我們又要如何確定誰對誰錯呢?如果形上學爭辯只是關於我們字詞與概念的字面之爭,那麼似乎使用傳統的「概念分析」(conceptual analysis)或「語言分析」(linguistic analysis)便足夠了。但如果形上學爭辯是關於客觀實在的實質爭議,那麼我們似乎需要更進一步的方法論工具來進行形上學研究。但這樣的工具會是什麼呢?也許是透過某種「形上解釋」(metaphysical explanation)或「立基」(grounding)的想法,顯明實在的層層結構來探討最基礎的東西是什麼。也許是透過某種「形上語意」(metaphysical semantics)或「結構」(structure)的想法,提供一套更好的、切中要理的(joint-carving)概念學(ideology)來描述最基礎的實在。又或許是透過某種「形上律則」(metaphysical law)或「本質」(essence)的想法,掌握住比模態必然性更細緻的連結來跨越基礎與非基礎間的解釋鴻溝。

最近的這十年來,這類的「後設形上學」議題突然受到了廣大的注目和討論。本課程的目標之一,便是要介紹這些後設形上學議題的發展與討論。本課程將選用Metametaphysics: New Essays on the Foundations of Ontology (Oxford, 2009) 為主要的閱讀材料,逐一探討後設形上學中主要的立場與爭辯。

Metaphysics asks questions about existence and reality, debating whether certain alleged entities exist, or whether certain alleged phenomena are real. But sometimes these debates seem like talking past each other. For instance, when the mereological nihilist denies the existence of chairs and tables without really questioning our ordinary claims about chairs and tables, they just seem to use the word ‘existence’ in a radically different meaning from our ordinary English words. Similarly, when the incompatibilist and the compatibilist disagree about whether free will is compatible with determinism, they just seem to have different conceptions of freedom. But if so, they would not be genuine substantial debates about objective reality, but simply verbal issues about our words and concepts. Is it really so?

Even if we have good reason to think metaphysical debates are substantial, how are we supposed to settle them? If they are merely verbal debates about our words and concepts, perhaps conceptual analysis and/or linguistic analysis will do. But if they are substantial debates about objective reality, we require some further methodological tools to help us investigate them. What can such tools be? Perhaps it is the idea of metaphysical explanation or grounding, which reveals to us a layered reality for investigating what is the fundamental. Perhaps it is the idea of metaphysical semantics or structure, which provides us with some better, joint-carving ideology for describing the fundamental reality. Or perhaps it is the idea of metaphysical law or essence, which gives us more fine-grained connections than brute necessities for bridging the explanatory gaps between the fundamental and the non-fundamental.

The last decade has witnessed a tremendous interest in such metametaphysical questions. This course will provide a critical introduction to them. We will be studying the book Metametaphysics: New Essays on the Foundations of Ontology (Oxford, 2009), which collects a lot of ground-breaking classical papers in this field.
 

課程目標
本課程目標在於使學生
(1) 完整掌握各種關於後設形上學的議題;
(2) 對於主要的後設形上學立場有些基本的理解;
(3) 發展自己的後設形上學觀點。

In the end of the course, students are expected to
(1) have a comprehensive understanding of various metametaphysical issues;
(2) have some understanding of the main positions in metametaphysics; and
(3) develop their own metametaphysical views 
課程要求
每週修課同學需閱讀指定閱讀材料,並提出討論的問題,在上課前上傳至ceiba。上課時修課同學需參與課堂討論。 
預期每週課後學習時數
 
Office Hours
 
參考書目
Bennett, K. Making Things Up. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017.

Bliss, R., & Priest, G.(Eds.). Reality and Its Structure: Essays in Fundamentality. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018.

Correia, F., & Schnieder, B.(Eds.). Metaphysical Grounding: Understanding the Structure of Reality. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012.

Hofweber, T. Ontology and the Ambitions of Metaphysics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016.

Jago, M.(Ed.). Reality Making. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016.

McDaniel, K. The Fragmentation of Being. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017.

Sider, T. Writing the Book of the World. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011.

Tahko, T. E. An Introduction to Metametaphysics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015.

Thomasson, A. L. Ontology Made Easy. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015. 
指定閱讀
Chalmers, D. J., Manley, D., & Wasserman, R.(Eds.). Metametaphysics: New Essays on the Foundations of Ontology. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009. 
評量方式
(僅供參考)
 
No.
項目
百分比
說明
1. 
課堂參與 
20% 
 
2. 
報告 
80% 
 
 
課程進度
週次
日期
單元主題
第1週
2/20  Introduction 
第2週
2/27  ‘Composition, Colocation, and Metaontology’ by Karen Bennett 
第3週
3/06  ‘Ontological Anti-Realism’ by David Chalmers 
第4週
3/13  ‘The Question of Ontology’ by Kit Fine 
第5週
3/20  ‘The Metaontology of Abstraction’ by Bob Hale and Crispin Wright 
第6週
3/27  ‘Superficialism in Ontology’ by John Hawthorne 
第7週
4/03  National Holiday (no class) 
第8週
4/10  ‘Ontology and Alternative Languages’ by Eli Hirsch 
第9週
4/17  Midterm break 
第10週
4/24  ‘Ambitious, Yet Modest, Metaphysics’ by Thomas Hofweber 
第11週
5/01  ‘Ways of Being’ by Kris McDaniel 
第12週
5/08  ‘Metaphysics after Carnap: The Ghost Who Walks?’ by Huw Price 
第13週
5/15  ‘On What Grounds What’ by Jonathan Schaffer 
第14週
5/22  ‘Ontological Realism’ by Theodore Sider 
第15週
5/29  ‘Answerable and Unanswerable Questions’ by Amie Thomasson 
第16週
6/05  ‘Being, Existence, and Ontological Commitment’ by Peter van Inwagen 
第17週
6/12  ‘Must Existence-Questions have Answers?’ by Stephen Yablo