3

Does anybody know of a historiography or review of the discussion of the idea of the Ship of Theseus and things related thereto (I suppose this might also include Alan Gibbard's discussion of the Lumpl-Goliath problem). Failing an actual historiography - or perhaps in addition to it - what are some key references on this?

5

I wrote my dissertation on this! The ship of Theseus is just one example of a broader problem called the problem of material constitution, the literature on which is enormous.

As far as the history of the problem:

The ship case is first mentioned by Plutarch, in his Parallel Lives. And the general problem of identity over time is a topic among stoic philosophers in the Hellenistic period (inc. Chrysippus, IIRC.)

The problem is resurrected in early modern philosophy by Hobbes in a work known as the de corpore.

For a nice collection of contemporary papers on these issues see the collection called Material Constitution by Michael Rea.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.