Background information: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/art- ... y-history/
I believe there are only concrete objects or entities. That is, I reject ontological abstractism aka platonism = realism about abstracta.Count Lucanor wrote: ↑January 22nd, 2019, 8:10 pmThere are abstract and concrete objects.Consul wrote:For example, the question is: What is the referent of the name "Beethoven's Ninth Symphony"? Beethoven's handwritten original score and all printed copies or versions of it are concrete, physical things representing BNS, but none of them is called "BNS". All performances of BNS are concrete, physical events and manifestations of it, but none of them is called "BNS". For BNS as such is an abstract or "objectively ideal" (* object, and I think as such it is a fictional object. (* i.e. not "subjectively ideal" like a mental idea or image)
Are you referring to sets or classes?
Being an antiplatonist, I believe there are no sets or classes as abstract objects. (If sets/classes are nothing more than aggregates, i.e. mereological sums, of concrete entities, then I acknowledge their existence.)
Terminological remark: Properties known as tropes (or modes), which aren't universals but particulars, have been called "abstract particulars"; but they aren't abstract in the platonistic sense. In fact, they are ontologically concrete; that is, they are mental or physical, and they exist somewhere in space and time.
"For [Donald] Williams, and for us following his usage, abstract does not imply indefinite, or purely theoretical. Most importantly, it does not imply that what is abstract is non-spatio-temporal. The solidity of this bell, here and now, is a definite, experienceable and locatable reality. It is so definite, experienceable and locatable that it can knock your head off, if you are not careful."
(Campbell, Keith. Abstract Particulars. Oxford: Blackwell, 1990. p. 3)
Are you referring to concepts? (Categories are concepts.)
Being an antiplatonist, I believe there are no concepts as abstract objects, be they Platonic universals, Fregean predicate-senses, or types of mental representations (as opposed to concrete tokens thereof).
We have different distinctions here:
1. types vs. tokens
2. universals vs. instances
3. intensions (concepts [qua predicate-meanings]) vs. extensions (sets/classes)
I think 1 isn't identical to 2 or 3. I especially think that types aren't universals (neither substantial ones = kinds nor nonsubstantial ones = properties or relations) but particulars (particular abstract objects) because of their "non-predicability".
"When it comes to being predicable, however, most types diverge from such classic examples of universals as the property of being white or the relation of being east of. They seem not to be predicable, or at least not as obviously so as the classic examples of universals. That is, if the hallmark of a universal is to answer to a predicate or open sentence such as being white answers to ‘is white’, then most types do not resemble universals, as they more readily answer to singular terms. This is amply illustrated by the type talk exhibited in §2 above. It is also underscored by the observation that it is more natural to say of a token of a word—‘infinity’, say—that it is a token of the word ‘infinity’ than that it is an ‘infinity’. That is to say, types seem to be objects, like numbers and sets, rather than properties or relations; it's just that they are not concrete particulars but are general objects—abstract objects, on some views."
For example, if Beethoven's Ninth Symphony [BNS] (qua type) were a kind-universal, one could say of something that it is a Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. But doing so seems nonsensical—as opposed to saying of something that it is a symphony (which can truly be said of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony).
By the way, the abstract-concrete distinction and the universal-particular distinction are mutually independent. For example, so-called Platonic or transcendent universals are abstract entities, but so-called Aristotelian or immanent universals are not, being concrete entities in space and time.
By the way, strictly speaking, abstract universals shouldn't be called abstract objects, since they aren't objects in the narrow ontological sense of "object", in which it is not synonymous with "entity".
On the other hand, calling them abstract entities is not or hardly acceptable for antiplatonists like me, because doing so presupposes (or seems to presuppose at least) their existence—unless "entity" isn't used synonymously with "something that is/exists". From my antiplatonist point of view, abstract "entities" are actually nonentities. The advantage of "object" is its ontological neutrality, there being no ontological commitment involved in called something an abstract object.
By the way, the universal-particular distinction is also different from the attribute-object/substance distinction, since attributes (properties or relations) can be particulars (called tropes/modes).
…or an abstract object (that is not a type qua universal).
Abstract objects don't exist in any minds, since if they did, they would be concrete objects, with "concrete" generally meaning "physical or mental (or physically or mentally reducible)". Moreover, an abstract object cannot possibly become a concrete one, because the abstract and the concrete are mutually exclusive ontological categories.Count Lucanor wrote: ↑January 22nd, 2019, 8:10 pmI think we should acknowledge that it is a singular concrete object, which exists as a composition, a design, a particular organization of sounds devised in a particular moment in time. It happens to require for its perception and realization as a discrete entity, the material representation of symbols (musical notation), that is, the graphical record that allows its reassembly in particular performances. The same happens with theatrical plays, but also with the design of a house or a car, which at one moment ceased to be only abstract objects in the creator's mind and became concrete designs, evidenced by precise blueprints. So, the Ninth is not an abstract universal; as a singular object it is not a type, and neither its performances are tokens. However, in relation to the "classical music" type, the Ninth could be its token.
I agree with you that BNS is not (neither an abstract nor a concrete) universal, but I disagree with you insofar as I think that it is an abstract object qua type ("type-object" rather than "type-universal")—albeit a fictional and thus nonexistent one, but I'm just talking about ontologically noncommitting categorial distinctions here.
I think the relationship between BNS and its performances as concrete sound-events is best described in terms of the type-token distinction. (Well, again, from my antiplatonist perspective, it's just a pseudo-relationship, since a real relationship presupposes the coexistence of all its relata.)
If your sentence "In relation to the 'classical music' type, the Ninth could be its token" simply means that the Ninth is (an instance of the property of being) a piece of classical music or (an instance of the property of being) a symphony, then this is certainly true (unless, I think, the talk of property-instances presupposes the existence of properties qua universals, because I don't believe in property-universals).
Right, in the case of works of art such as paintings or sculptures, which are unique and unrepeatable concrete, material objects, a copy of the original is not a second original. (Well, some artists have themselves made duplicates of their paintings or sculptures, which might count as additional originals.)Count Lucanor wrote: ↑January 22nd, 2019, 8:10 pmPainting and sculpture, because of the materials used and the corresponding perception, do not require "instructions" for their realization, they come out as discrete entities right away, the moment of creation coincides with the moment of execution. I think that perhaps this is (or should be) behind Goodman's famous distinction between autographic and allographic art. Thus, the exact copy of a painting is a forgery, but the exact reproduction of Beethoven's Ninth is not.
A performance of BNS is certainly not a copy or a reproduction of it (but a realization of it in the form of a physical sound-event), let alone an exact one, since no two performances of BNS are exactly similar. This is a good thing, since the various interpretations of the same score by different conductors and orchesters enrich our musical culture (and the companies selling CDs).
If types are kinds (kind-universals) and gargoyles are stone figures or statues in or at churches (rather than the fictional creatures represented by them), then each particular one of them can be called an instance of the type/kind "gargoylehood". But note that here "gargoylehood" refers to a kind of stone figure/statue and not to a (fictional) kind of living creature! Gargoyles qua stone figures/statues do exist, but gargoyles qua (fictional) living creatures (represented by the former) do not.Count Lucanor wrote: ↑January 22nd, 2019, 8:10 pmNone of this has to do with the nature of fictional entities, which can show up by means of representation in singular concrete objects, and can become abstract universals. The gargoyles in medieval churches represent mythical, fictional, imaginary entities, which don't really exist, but the stone figures are concrete particulars, of which common features could be abstracted to conform the abstract universal type "gargoyle", being each particular stone gargoyle its token.
Since all fictional objects are nothing but nonexistent intentional objects of thought or imagination, there must be existent mental or physical representations of them. But the relationship between a fictional object and its real representations is neither the one between universals and their instances, nor the one between types and their tokens. (A performance of BNS realizes but doesn't represent it.)