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Constitution, at first glance, the relation between an item and its components or parts, is a topic-neutral relation of vast generality, applying wherever the notion of complexity gets a foothold. Accordingly, it is a great mistake to restrict prematurely the scope of one's account of constitution to a few categories such as material objects and arbitrary aggregates. For one then runs the risk of misplaced generality, of mistaking idiosyncratic features of a specific category or kind of item for general principles governing the relation of constitution itself.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Contemporary Philosophy
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191577109
ISBN (Print)9780199234769
StatePublished - Nov 29 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Arts and Humanities


  • Arbitrary aggregates
  • Constitution
  • Idiosyncratic features
  • Material objects
  • Misplaced generality
  • Topic-neutral relation


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