C. D. Broad, Examination of McTaggart's Philosophy, 1933



In this Book we are concerned with the notion of Characteristics and the notion of Particulars, with the connexions between the two, and with certain general principles which McTaggart holds to be true of all Particulars. In Chap. V we discuss the division of characteristics into Qualities and Relations, and criticise McTaggart,s doctrine of Generated Characteristics. In Chap. VI we discuss the division of characteristics into Simple, Compound, and Complex. This leads on to a fairly elaborate independent discussion of the nature of Analysis Definition, and Description, in which we depart considerably from McTaggart. In Chap. VII we are concerned with the notion of what McTaggart calls "Substances" and we call "Particulars". This ends with a lengthy independent discussion of the division of Particulars into Things and Processes, which McTaggart tacitly assumes to be invalid. We tentatively reach the conclusion that the notion of Thing can be dispensed with in favour of the notion of Absolute Process. Chap. VIII contains a discussion of the grounds for believing that there is more than one particular. In Chap. IX we explain, and contest, McTaggart's principle that it is self-evident that two particulars could not be exactly alike in all their characteristics. In Chap. X we expound, and try to refute, the argument by which McTaggart claimed to show that every particular must have an unique description which involves no reference to any merely designated particular.

Contents -- Chapter 5