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A world without objects: the metaphysics of indeterminacy in ancient philosophy, from Democritus to Aenesidemus.

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 AWWO project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the AWWO project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "AWWO" about.

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Project "AWWO" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
city: DURHAM
postcode: DH1 3LE

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country United Kingdom [UK]
 Project website
 Total cost 195˙454 €
 EC max contribution 195˙454 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2014
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2015
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2015-06-01   to  2017-05-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    UNIVERSITY OF DURHAM UK (DURHAM) coordinator 195˙454.00


 Project objective

The proposed project aims at investigating the metaphysics of indeterminacy in ancient philosophy. By relying on the aid of contemporary metaphysics (in particular, Van Inwagen's materialism and Merricks', and Stage-theory of material objects), the project will show that the metaphysics of indeterminacy was an important, yet neglected, part of ancient metaphysics, from the time of Democritus to that of Aenesidemus. The project will deal with a variety of Greek philosophers, traditionally understood as subjectivists (this very general label as meant to include relativists, sceptics, infallibilists and nihilists). These are the following ones: Democritus, Protagoras and Gorgias, Heraclitus, the Socratic schools of the Cyrenaics (including later exponents of the school, such as Theodorus the Godless) and the Megarians (Euclides, Eubulides, Diodorus Cronus, Stilpo), Pyrrho and neo-pyrrhonism (Aenesidemus). The project will demonstrate that, although in different ways, all the philosophers just mentioned adhered to a view of the world according to which either 1) objects of perception are indeterminate with regard to their properties or 2) objects in themselves are best understood as indeterminate items (in particular, on this latter view, objects as stable and unitary items are denied to be existing). The project is both historical and philosophical, in so far as not only does it attempt to reconstruct the details of ancient conceptions of metaphysical indeterminacy, but it will also try to demonstrate the philosophical viability of those conceptions by drawing close parallelisms with current theories of metaphysical indeterminacy. To appreciate the pervasiveness of metaphysical indeterminacy in ancient Greek philosophy is tantamount to providing a revolutionary insight in the history of ancient metaphysics (and of metaphysics tout court) by challenging the standard view that sees it dominated by Plato’s and Aristotle’s different, yet cognate, essentialisms.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2015 Michel Narcy (ed)
Critical Review of Kurt Lampe, The Birth of Hedonism (Princeton University Press)
published pages: 269-276, ISSN: 1634-4561, DOI:
Philosophie Antique yearly 2019-07-23
2016 Lorenzo Corti and Joseph Vidal-Rosset
Could the Cyrenaics live an ethical life?inLe scepticisme selon Jules Vuillemin
published pages: , ISSN: 1281-2463, DOI:
Philosophia Scientiae three times a year 2019-07-23
2016 Ugo Zilioli
Protagoras and the Challenge of Relativism. Plato\'s Subtlest Enemy.
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:

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