Quine and the Correspondence Theory

Hartry Field

in Truth and the Absence of Fact

Published in print March 2001 | ISBN: 9780199242894
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597381 | DOI:
 Quine and the Correspondence Theory

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A correspondence theory of truth explains truth in terms of various correspondence relations (e.g. reference) between words and the world. Quine's doctrine of indeterminacy is often supposed to undermine correspondence theories of truth, and Quine himself argued this in Ontological Relativity with his doctrine of ‘relative reference’. This chapter argues that the relativization of reference that Quine proposed makes no sense, and that we can accommodate indeterminacy by generalizing the kind of correspondence relations we appeal to; this will save the correspondence theory. Includes an appendix on vagueness and indeterminacy in the metalanguage, and a new postscript.

Keywords: correspondence theory of truth; higher‐order vagueness; identity; indeterminacy; ontological relativity; Quine; reference; supervaluation; vagueness

Chapter.  12489 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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