A critique of Resnik's mathematical realism

Erkenntnis 62 (3):379 - 393 (2005)
This paper attempts to motivate skepticism about the reality of mathematical objects. The aim of the paper is not to provide a general critique of mathematical realism, but to demonstrate the insufficiency of the arguments advanced by Michael Resnik. I argue that Resnik’s use of the concept of immanent truth is inconsistent with the treatment of mathematical objects as ontologically and epistemically continuous with the objects posited by the natural sciences. In addition, Resnik’s structuralist program, and his denial of relational properties, is incompatible with a realist metaphysics about mathematical objects.
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