David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Grazer Philosophische Studien 67 (1):59-99 (2004)
Quine's early arguments in favor of "Ontological Relativity" depend on wild but interesting alternatives to standard ontology,most apparent when viewing his unusual idea of undetached object parts. In Quine's later philosophy, by contrast, he invokes trivial proxy functions and simple permutations to standard ontology, and in so doing paves the way for his claim of "Inscrutability of Reference". Nevertheless, Quine's more recent alternatives to standard ontology have thus far remained uninteresting for ontological questions, as his later arguments fail to offer any real alternative to our standard identity relation. For this reason, I have chosen to return to Quine's original idea of "Ontological Relativity" and put it to the test. In my investigation, development and subsequent defense of Quine's original presentation, I attempt to show that it is in fact possible to read Quine's ontology of undetached object parts into a large sphere of our language.
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