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Substance and Identity-Dependence

Michael Gorman


The notion of substance has become rather important in recent metaphysical discussions, but there is no consensus on how it is to be understood. In this paper I discuss the idea that substance can be defined in terms of identity-dependence. Giving special attention to the work of E. J. Lowe, who is the main advocate of this position, I clarify how the identity-dependence approach ought to be understood and defend it against an objection having to do with dependence on God. I then bring forward difficulties having to do with mereological essentialism and necessity of origins. These difficulties are much more powerful, but it is possible to revise the identity-dependence approach in a way that avoids them
AJOL African Journals Online