Reading Group on Karen Bennett's forthcoming book Making Things Up.

The Power Structuralism in Ancient Ontologies research group are running a reading group on Karen Bennett’s forthcoming book Making Things Up. The book is about what Bennett terms ‘building relations’—grounding, composition, determination, realization, constitution and so forth. Questions addressed include, but are not limited to: (i) do all these building relations form, in some sense, a unified family? (ii) do causes build their effects? (iii) what is the relationship between building and fundamentality? (iv) are building relations themselves built, or must at least one such relation be fundamental?

The reading group meets on Wednesdays, 4:30—6:30, at Corpus Christi College, Fraenkel Room, during weeks 2, 4, 6, and 8 of both MT and HT. For our final meeting, Karen will be visiting Corpus Christi and we will have a Q&A session. We should write down questions we would like to ask Karen at this session as we go along.

Readings for each meeting will be selected from Bennett’s book and may if appropriate be supplemented by secondary material. Readings for each meeting will be announced well in advance of each meeting and posted below. Members are encouraged to volunteer to give presentations, and to suggest secondary readings that they feel would complement the relevant sections of the book. Drinks will be served afterwards for those who wish to stay.


Chapters 1-3 Making Things Up

These are the chapters we read in MT2012. 

Chapters 1-4 Making Things Up (Revised Jan 13)

A new draft, including chapter 4. Also includes revised versions of sections 2.6 and 3.1. In Bennett's words, the changes are as follows:

In 2.6, where I characterize the core notion of building.  It's presentationally different, and also the modal account of connection is somewhat different.

In 3.1, where a few small changes to a few paragraphs I think (hope) clarify my treatment of the claim that causation is a building relation.

Chapter 5 Making Things Up (Jan 24) 

Jessica Wilson, 'No Work For a Theory of Grounding' 

Kim, J. Physicalism, or Something Near Enough, ch.1

Hall, N. 'Two Concepts of Causation' 

Handout for meeting 1

Handout for meeting 2

Handout for meeting 3