Maddy's Objections

Mark Colyvan

in The Indispensability of Mathematics

Published in print April 2001 | ISBN: 9780195137545
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833139 | DOI:
                   Maddy's Objections

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Penelope Maddy's objections to the indispensability argument are considered. In two of her objections – the objection from scientific fictions and the objection from the role of mathematics in scientific theories – it is argued that much of the force is derived from taking an implausible reading of naturalism. Moreover, this reading of naturalism is not endorsed by either Quine or Maddy. It is also argued that the third of Maddy's objections – the mathematical practice objection – turns on a misconception about Quinean holism.

Keywords: holism; indispensability argument; Maddy; mathematical practice; naturalism; Quine

Chapter.  10415 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mathematics and Logic

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