Chapter

Truthmaking

John Heil

in The Universe As We Find It

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199596201
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741876 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199596201.003.0008
Truthmaking

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The significance and utility of the concept of truthmaking are discussed. The suggestion that truthmaking is entailment (truths entail truthmakers) is found wanting, as is the apparently innocent slogan that ‘truth supervenes on being’. Truthmaking is said to be an internal relation holding between a truth bearer — a representation that the world is some way — and the world’s being that way. Quine’s criterion of ontological commitment and its implications for the determination of what exists are discussed and found to be ontologically unilluminating. The question whether every truth has a truthmaker is addressed, and the suggestion that truths of logic and mathematics ‘require nothing of the world’, hence need no truthmakers (‘trivialism’), is regarded with favor. The possibility that reality, being itself, has a definite nature, is defended.

Keywords: truth; truthmaker; truth bearer; entailment; supervenience; ontological commitment; quine; existence; trivialism; reality; being

Chapter.  10784 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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