David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Australasian Journal of Philosophy 74 (4):639 – 645 (1996)
The Quine/Putnam indispensability argument is regarded by many as the chief argument for the existence of platonic objects. We argue that this argument cannot establish what its proponents intend. The form of our argument is simple. Suppose indispensability to science is the only good reason for believing in the existence of platonic objects. Either the dispensability of mathematical objects to science can be demonstrated and, hence, there is no good reason for believing in the existence of platonic objects, or their dispensability cannot be demonstrated and, hence, there is no good reason for believing in the existence of mathematical objects which are genuinely platonic. Therefore, indispensability, whether true or false, does not support platonism
|Keywords||Platonism Abstract objects Hartrey Field Causal Powers Indispensability Arguments|
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References found in this work BETA
D. M. Armstrong (1989). A Combinatorial Theory of Possibility. Cambridge University Press.
Paul Benacerraf (1973). Mathematical Truth. Journal of Philosophy 70 (19):661-679.
John Bigelow & Robert Pargetter (1990). Science and Necessity. Cambridge University Press.
Hartry Field (1989). Realism, Mathematics & Modality. Basil Blackwell.
Hartry Field (1980). Science Without Numbers. Princeton University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Colin Cheyne (1998). Existence Claims and Causality. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 76 (1):34 – 47.
Mark Colyvan (2000). Conceptual Contingency and Abstract Existence. Philosophical Quarterly 50 (198):87-91.
Mark Colyvan (1998). Is Platonism a Bad Bet? Australasian Journal of Philosophy 76 (1):115 – 119.
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