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Metaphysics aims to describe reality in the most general and fundamental terms.

One part of the discipline (ontology) is concerned with which kinds of entity exist – the physicist may offer electrons, the zoologist zebras. The ontologist, however, collects all such things in the category of physical objects and asks whether there are other such categories. Minds? Numbers? Divine Beings?

Beyond ontology there is the question of the nature of the entities that exist and, so questions about properties, identity, change, causation and essences. The biggest challenge to metaphysics is whether it has been made redundant by successful natural science.


People in the Department of Philosophy who work in this area include: