In Defense of Quinean Ontological Naturalism

Erkenntnis 76 (2):225-242 (2012)
Quinean Ontological Naturalism addresses the question “What is there?” Advocates of the view maintain that we can answer this question by applying Quine’s criterion of ontological commitment to our best scientific theories. In this paper, I discuss two major objections that are commonly offered to this view, what I call the “Paraphrase Objection” and “First Philosophy Objection”. I argue that these objections arise from a common uncharitable characterization of the Quinean Ontological Naturalist’s project that fails to distinguish two distinct roles for Quine’s Criterion, a descriptive role and a normative role. The objections target the descriptive role, but only the normative role is important to Quinean Ontological Naturalism
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 9,357
External links
  •   Try with proxy.
  • Through your library Configure
    References found in this work BETA
    William P. Alston (1958). Ontological Commitments. Philosophical Studies 9 (1-2):8 - 17.
    Jody Azzouni (1998). On "on What There Is". Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 79 (1):1–18.

    View all 17 references

    Citations of this work BETA

    No citations found.

    Similar books and articles
    Peter Van Inwagen (1998). Meta-Ontology. Erkenntnis 48 (2/3):233 - 250.
    Michaelis Michael (2008). Implicit Ontological Commitment. Philosophical Studies 141 (1):43 - 61.
    A. Rosenberg (1999). Naturalistic Epistemology for Eliminative Materialists. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (2):335-358.
    Dan McArthur (2008). Theory Change, Structural Realism, and the Relativised a Priori. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 22 (1):5 – 20.

    Monthly downloads

    Added to index


    Total downloads

    40 ( #35,903 of 1,088,428 )

    Recent downloads (6 months)

    2 ( #42,750 of 1,088,428 )

    How can I increase my downloads?

    My notes
    Sign in to use this feature

    Start a new thread
    There  are no threads in this forum
    Nothing in this forum yet.