David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Analysis 69 (3):461-469 (2009)
A well-known proof by Alonzo Church, first published in 1963 by Frederic Fitch, purports to show that all truths are knowable only if all truths are known. This is the Paradox of Knowability. If we take it, quite plausibly, that we are not omniscient, the proof appears to undermine metaphysical doctrines committed to the knowability of truth, such as semantic anti-realism. Since its rediscovery by Hart and McGinn ( 1976), many solutions to the paradox have been offered. In this article, we present a new proof to the effect that not all truths are knowable, which rests on different assumptions from those of the original argument published by Fitch. We highlight the general form of the knowability paradoxes, and argue that anti-realists who favour either an hierarchical or an intuitionistic approach to the Paradox of Knowability are confronted with a dilemma: they must either give up anti-realism or opt for a highly controversial interpretation of the principle that every truth is knowable.
|Keywords||Knowability Anti-realism Idealisation Fitch's Paradox|
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References found in this work BETA
Michael Dummett (1975). Wang's Paradox. Synthese 30 (3-4):201--32.
Alexander Paseau (2008). Fitch's Argument and Typing Knowledge. Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 49 (2):153-176.
Timothy Williamson (1982). Intuitionism Disproved? Analysis 42 (4):203--7.
Citations of this work BETA
Massimiliano Carrara & Davide Fassio (2011). Why Knowledge Should Not Be Typed: An Argument Against the Type Solution to the Knowability Paradox. Theoria 77 (2):180-193.
Julien Murzi (2010). Knowability and Bivalence: Intuitionistic Solutions to the Paradox of Knowability. [REVIEW] Philosophical Studies 149 (2):269 - 281.
Julien Murzi (2012). Manifestability and Epistemic Truth. Topoi 31 (1):17-26.
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