Defending the Discovery Model in the Ontology of Art: A Reply to Amie Thomasson on the Qua Problem

British Journal of Aesthetics 52 (1):75-95 (2012)
Abstract
According to the discovery model in the ontology of art, the facts concerning the ontological status of artworks are mind-independent and, hence, are facts about which the folk may be substantially ignorant or in error. In recent work Amie Thomasson has claimed that the most promising solution to the ‘ qua problem’—a problem concerning how the reference of a referring-expression is fixed—requires us to give up the discovery model. I argue that this claim is false. Thomasson's solution to the qua problem—a hybrid descriptive/causal theory of reference-fixing—has a superior competitor, in the form of the account of reference-fixing suggested by Gareth Evans; and Evans's theory leaves the discovery model untouched
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