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Masterclasses II


The course deals with the synchronic nature and diachronic identity of material objects. In particular, it presents and discusses the main theories that concern the metaphysical structure, if any, of material objects, such as substratum theory, bundle theory, trope theory and neoaristotelianism, as well as the main theories that concern the persistence of material objects through time, such as three-dimensionalism, four-dimensionalism, and the stage view, with a special focus on a battery of arguments that favor the stage view over its rivals.


Armstrong, D. M. (1989). Universals, Westview, Boulder (CO).
Bergmann, G. (1967). Realism, University of Winsconsin Press, Madison.
Black, M. (1952). “The Identity of Indiscernibles”, Mind 61: 152–164.
Campbell, K. (1990). Abstract Particulars, Blackwell, Oxford.
Cotnoir, A. and Baxter, D. (eds.) (2014). Composition as Identity, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Haslanger, S. and Kurtz, R. (eds.) (2006). Persistence: Contemporary Readings, MIT Press, Cambridge MA.
Hawley, K. (2001). How Things Persist, Clarendon Press, Oxford.
Sider, T. (2001). Four-Dimensionalism: An Ontology of Persistence and Time, Clarendon Press, Oxford.
van Inwagen, P. (1990). Material Beings, Cornell University Press, Ithaca (NY).
Varzi, A. C. (2003). “Naming the Stages”, Dialectica 57: 387–412.
Varzi, A. C. (2005). “Change, Temporal Parts, and the Argument from Vagueness”, Dialectica 59: 485–498.



Varzi A.

Course director

Additional information

Academic year
Master of Arts in Philosophy, Core course, 1st year