I present an argument that tropes can change. The argument is roughly this. (1) An object can undergo and (2) endure through intrinsic qualitative changes, and when it does, (3) there is specifically a bit of it that changes. (4) Tropes are the relevant bits, and hence (5) the precise subjects of change. The relevant bits cannot always be ordinary parts because the relevant sorts of change could befall an atom. It remains open that a trope has its determinable character essentially, though if the argument succeeds, a trope’s determinate character need not be essential to it. After presenting and clarifying the main argument, I discuss substratum- and bundle-theoretic accounts of trope change. I then reply to an important objection and, finally, discuss four applications for a theory on which tropes can change.
Paul Audi is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Rochester.