In this paper, I develop a new framework for thinking about medieval views about place—one designed not only to resolve their apparent conceptual difficulties, but also to situate them vis-à-vis positions familiar from contemporary debates about space. In developing my framework, I focus on the views of one important and influential medieval thinker—namely, Thomas Aquinas (d. 1274). My strategy is to show that, if Aquinas’s views about place are approached from the perspective of what he says about spatial location, we can see that they presuppose a perfectly coherent and distinctive type of substantivalism—indeed, one that combines the chief virtues, as well as avoids the chief vices, of standard forms of substantivalism.
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The Mereology of Potentiality Seminar Convenors: Anna Marmodoro and Andrea Roselli