B3 - Functional terms and frames in metaphysics of substance

The project is concerned with the interrelations between different conceptions of traditional metaphysics of substance and different uses of central notions (“substance”, “form”, “matter”) used in these conceptions. The main subject is the notion of substance that is alternately used as a sortal term (“x is a substance”) and a functional term as a subclass of the relational terms (“the substance of x”) and then can be replaced by the notion of substrate (“the substrate of x”). Substance as a sortal term refers to something existing independently, substance as a functional term refers to something which underlies something different, namely accidents or properties of things. The project aimes to investigate to what extent the classical notion of substance, the metaphysical conceptions based on it, and the critics of metaphysical concepttions are obliged to the use of “substance” as a sortal or a functional term and how the development of metaphysics of substance including predominant types of criticism can be analyzed with regard to the mentioned terminological distinction. Furthermore, the critical approach reducing substances to mere bundles of properties or attributes will be measured with the recent approach of frames. Hereby the project is devoted to a main area of the terminology of theoretical philosophy and intends new historical and systematical insights about the linguistic tools of metaphysical theories.