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Kitcher, ideal agents, and fictionalism

Philosophia Mathematica 12 (1):3-17 (2004)
Abstract
Kitcher urges us to think of mathematics as an idealized science of human operations, rather than a theory describing abstract mathematical objects. I argue that Kitcher's invocation of idealization cannot save mathematical truth and avoid platonism. Nevertheless, what is left of Kitcher's view is worth holding onto. I propose that Kitcher's account should be fictionalized, making use of Walton's and Currie's make-believe theory of fiction, and argue that the resulting ideal-agent fictionalism has advantages over mathematical-object fictionalism.
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E. C. Bourne (2013). Fictionalism. Analysis 73 (1):147-162.
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