from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Difference, distinction; failure to be identical.
  • noun mathematics An operator which modifies its operand, and which therefore is not the identity.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Ernest LePore and Barry Loewer (1989) have even called the nonidentity of mental content with any physical properties “practically received wisdom” among philosophers of mind.

    Multiple Realizability

  • In this anthology, virtually none of the articles explicitly labels the nonidentity problem as esoteric, far-fetched, or generally outlandish.

    Philosophy, et cetera

  • Still other philosophers have suggested that both the nonidentity problem and the repugnant conclusion can be avoided by principles that require agents to create additional wellbeing “for persons” (even if not for particular persons) but restrict that obligation to the case where they can substitute in a single, better off, nonidentical child in place of the less well off child.

    The Nonidentity Problem

  • The nonidentity problem argues that these two beliefs cannot both be correct.

    The Nonidentity Problem

  • The success of this take on the nonidentity problem will depend in part on whether we can plausibly account for an act's being wrong in cases in which it is clear to us that the act both really is wrong and not worse for any person who does or will exist.

    The Nonidentity Problem

  • The nonidentity problem takes it for granted that an act harms a person only if an act makes that person worse off than he or she would have been under an alternative act.

    The Nonidentity Problem

  • The nonidentity problem seems to show that “Theory X will not take a person-affecting form” (Parfit 1987, 378).

    The Nonidentity Problem

  • This view bifurcates the nonidentity cases, by suggesting one analysis of wrongful life case and another of, e.g., the depletion case: the future persons will all be deemed to have suffered harm but only the victims of depletion will be deemed to have been harmed by the choice under scrutiny.

    The Nonidentity Problem

  • A contractualist approach to the nonidentity problem will focus on the legitimate expectations future persons have in respect of the agents whose acts cause them both to exist and suffer.

    The Nonidentity Problem

  • These concerns seem rooted in the hope that the nonidentity problem can be addressed within the scope of a person-affecting approach without taking the extreme step of denying that the acts under scrutiny in the nonidentity cases are wrong.

    The Nonidentity Problem


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.