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Graham Priest: Unity and Regress | WSB#7

September 26, 2017

An interview with Graham Priest about Bradley's Regress and the Unity of the Proposition. Consider the statement "Socrates is sitting." It seems to be composed of an object - "Socrates" - and a predicate - "is sitting". But the statement isn't merely a list of an object and a predicate. It hangs together as a unified statement. What accounts for that unity? What makes the statement "Socrates is sitting" say something, as opposed to simply listing out a thing and a property? The obvious answer is that there's a property - instantiation - that connects the object and the predicate. But then a regress arises: how does the property of instantiation hang together with Socrates and the property of sitting? This problem isn't just about statements. As British idealist F.H. Bradley pointed out, this regress shows up with all property instantiations. After laying out the problem, professor Priest explains his own unique solution to it.

Next week: Graham Priest: Sorites Paradox

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Special thanks for Jackie Blum for the podcast art, and The Tin Box for the theme music.

One: Being an Investigation into the Unity of Reality and of its Parts, including the Singular Object which is Nothingness by Graham Priest