The no-category ontology

Otávio Bueno, Jacob Busch, Scott A. Shalkowski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


In this paper we argue that there are no categories of being-at least not in the robust metaphysical sense of something fundamental. Central arguments that metaphysicians provide in support of fundamental categories, such as indispensability and theoretical utility arguments, are not adequate to guarantee their existence. We illustrate this point by examining Jonathan Lowe's (2006) four-category ontology, and indicating its shortcomings. In contrast, we offer an alternative, no-category ontology, which dispenses with any fundamental categories of being, and provides a deflationary understanding of any categorization in terms of concepts. Concepts, we insist, as opposed to fundamental ontological categories, can always be revised, refined, and recast. A distinctive deflationary, no-category ontology then emerges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)233-245
Number of pages13
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy


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