Truth, sentential non-compositionality, and ontology

Synthese 126 (1-2):221 - 259 (2001)
Abstract
The paper attempts to clarify some fundamental aspects of an explanationof the concept of truth which is neither deflationary nor substantive.The main aspect examined in detail concerns the ontological dimension of truth, the mind/language-world connection traditionally associated with the concept of truth. It is claimed that it does not make sense to defend or reject a relatedness of truth to the ontological dimension so long as the kind of presupposed or envisaged ontology is not made explicit and critically examined. In particular, it is shown that generally an objectual ontology is – often only implicitly – presupposed, i.e., an ontology admitting objects (substances), properties, relations, sometimes also facts, events, and the like. The paper demonstrates that such an ontology derives from the Principle of Semantic Sentential Compositionality and that this principle should be rejected. It introduces instead the Principle of Semantic Sentential Contextuality (or Context Principle) as the semantic basis of a new ontology, an ontology of primary states of affairs. After sketching such an ontology, it is shown that the relatedness of truth to the ontological dimension becomes intelligible.
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Citations of this work BETA
Ilkka Niiniluoto (2004). Tarski's Definition and Truth-Makers. Annals of Pure and Applied Logic 126 (1-3):57-76.
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