CFP: Artifacts and the Metaphysics of the Social - Extended Deadline May 31, 2022

Submission deadline: May 31, 2022

Topic areas


We invite submissions on the topic, “Artifacts and the Metaphysics of the Social”, for the next issue of the open-access, peer-reviewed, online journal, Metaphysics (, co-edited by Kathrin Koslicki and Michael Raven, to be published in 2022/2023.

Since ancient Greek times, questions concerning the ontological status of artifacts have given rise to numerous philosophical challenges which continue to be debated today. Such questions include, but are not limited to, the following:

·      Are artifacts substances and what is meant by “substance” in this context?

·      Are artifacts social entities and how, more generally, is the social to be delineated from the non-social?

·      Do artifacts have essences and, if so, what is the best way to formulate an essentialist account of artifacts?

·      Can a definition be given of what makes something an artifact that applies to all and only artifacts?

·      What types of entities belong to, and do not belong to, the category of artifacts? What is the contrast class of entities from which the category of artifacts is to be delineated?

·      What is the role played by the intentions of agents who make and/or use artifacts in determining an artifact’s kind-membership?

·      Are artifacts mind-dependent and, if so, in what way?

·      Can non-human agents make and/or use artifacts and, if so, what sorts of cognitive states are required on the part of an agent in order to justify the ascription of the ability to make and/or use artifacts?

·      What is the role played by functions in an account of artifacts? How is the phenomenon of malfunction to be analyzed?

·      How ought we to understand what happens during the process of prototype production?

·      What happens when multiple artifacts are created in a single act of mass-production?

·      Must processes of artifact-production involve intrinsic change on the part of some pre-existing objects or materials? Or is non-intrinsic change sufficient, in some cases (e.g., “Ready-Mades” or “Found Objects”), to give rise to a new artifact or a new type of artifact?

·      Are artworks artifacts and, if so, how can a theory of artifacts accommodate the special features of artworks?

Papers should be submitted through the journal’s online platform. Prior to submitting your paper, please consult the journal’s submission guidelines:

Extended Submission Deadline: May 31, 2022

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