The Routledge Handbook of Metaphysical Grounding: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

The Routledge Handbook of Metaphysical Grounding

1st Edition

Edited by Michael J. Raven


384 pages | 12 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9780815366492
pub: 2020-03-13
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Some of philosophy’s biggest questions, both historically and today, are in-virtue-of questions: In virtue of what is an action right or wrong? In virtue of what am I the same person my mother bore? In virtue of what is an artwork beautiful? Philosophers attempt to answers many of these types of in-virtue-of questions, but philosophers are also increasingly focusing on what an in-virtue-of question is in the first place. Many assume, at least as a working hypothesis, that in-virtue-of questions involve a distinctively metaphysical kind of determinative explanation called "ground." This Handbook surveys the state of the art on ground as well as its connections and applications to other topics. The central issues of ground are discussed in 37 chapters, all written exclusively for this volume by a wide range of leading experts. The chapters are organized into the following sections:

I. History

II. Explanation and Determination

III. Logic and Structure

IV. Connections

V. Applications

Introductions at the start of each section provide an overview of the section’s contents, and a list of Related Topics at the end of each chapter point readers to other germane areas throughout the volume. The resulting volume is accessible enough for advanced students and informative enough for researchers. It is essential reading for anyone hoping to get clearer on what the biggest questions of philosophy are really asking.


"Grounding is one of the central topics in contemporary metaphysics. This collection represents the cutting edge of work in this fast-developing area, and is a must have both for veterans of debates about grounding and philosophers wanting to explore how thinking about grounding interacts with their favourite philosophical problems."

--Daniel Nolan, University of Notre Dame

Table of Contents

Introduction Michael J. Raven

Part I: History

1. Ancient Phil Corkum

2. Aristotelian DemonstrationMarko Malink

3. Medieval and Modern Margaret Cameron

4. Principle of Sufficient Reason Fatema Amijee

5. Bolzano Stefan Roski

6. Austro-German Phenomenologists Kevin Mulligan

Part II: Explanation and Determination

7. Dependence Benjamin Schnieder

8. Explanation Martin Glazier

9. Meta-ground Jon Erling Litland

10. Necessity Alexander Skiles

11. Skeptical Doubts Kathrin Koslicki

12. Anti-skeptical Rejoinders Louis deRosset

13. Varieties Kevin Richardson

Part III: Logic and Structure

14. Logics Francesca Poggiolesi

15. Granularity Fabrice Correia

16. Infinite Descent T. Scott Dixon

17. Strict Partial Order Naomi Thompson

18. Puzzles Stephan Krämer

Part IV: Connections

19. Analyticity Tom Donaldson

20. Cause Jennifer Wang

21. Emergence Stephan Leuenberger

22. Essence Justin Zylstra

23. Fundamentality Ricki Bliss

24. Modality David Mark Kovacs

25. Ontology Noël B. Saenz

26. Realism Olla Solomyak

27. Structure Tuomas E. Tahko

28. Truthmaking Kelly Trogdon

Part V: Applications

29. Identity Erica Shumener

30. Laws of Metaphysics Tobias Wilsch

31. Laws of Nature Nina Emery

32. Logic Michaela M. McSweeney

33. Mind Alyssa Ney

34. Normativity Stephanie Leary

35. Physicalism Amanda Bryant

36. Semantics Kit Fine

37. Social Entities Asya Passinsky

The Essential Glossary of Ground

About the Editor

Michael J. Raven is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Victoria and Affiliate Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Washington, Co-Chief Editor of Metaphysics, and a founding member of the Canadian Metaphysics Collaborative. His research focuses on metaphysics, philosophy of language and mind, and epistemology.

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Routledge Handbooks in Philosophy

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