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Article Dans Une Revue Applied Ontology Année : 2020

Physical processes, their life and their history


Here, I lay the foundations of a high-level ontology of particulars whose structuring principles differ radically from the `continuant' vs. `occurrent' distinction traditionally adopted in applied ontology. These principles are derived from a new analysis of the ontology of ``occurring'' or ``happening'' entities. Firstly, my analysis integrates recent work on the ontology of processes, which brings them closer to objects in their mode of existence and persistence by assimilating them to continuant particulars. Secondly, my analysis distinguishes clearly between processes and events, in order to make the latter abstract objects of thought (alongside propositions). Lastly, I open my ontological inventory to properties and facts, the existence of which is commonly admitted. By giving specific roles to these primitives, the framework allows one to account for static and dynamic aspects of the physical world and for the way that subjects conceive its history: facts account for the life of substances (physical objects and processes), whereas events enable cognitive subjects to account for the life story of substances.

Dates et versions

hal-03636391 , version 1 (10-04-2022)



Gilles Kassel. Physical processes, their life and their history. Applied Ontology, 2020, 15 (2), pp.109-133. ⟨10.3233/AO-200222⟩. ⟨hal-03636391⟩
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