Debating powers: where the real puzzle lies

Samuel Kimpton-Nye*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Stephen Mumford and Alexander Bird disagree about which properties are powers and, correspondingly, about the extent of the philosophical work to which powers may be put. Unfortunately, there is an important respect in which these authors are talking past each other and so the reason for their disagreement remains obscured. I highlight what has gone wrong in their recent exchange, attempt to clear up the confusion and pinpoint the true source of their disagreement. My hope is to redirect the efforts of these authors and their followers onto more pressing foundational issues in the metaphysics of powers.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInquiry (United Kingdom)
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2024


  • essence
  • explanation
  • necessity
  • Powers
  • properties


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