David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophical Studies 133 (3):439 - 441 (2007)
Robert Stalnaker is an actualist who holds that merely possible worlds are uninstantiated properties that might have been instantiated. Stalnaker also holds that there are no metaphysically impossible worlds: uninstantiated properties that couldn't have been instantiated. These views motivate Stalnaker's "two dimensional" account of the necessary a posteriori on which there is no single proposition that is both necessary and a posteriori. For a necessary proposition is true in all possible worlds. If there were necessary a posteriori propositions, that would mean that there were propositions true in all possible worlds but which could only be known to be true by acquiring empirical evidence. Consider such a purported proposition P. The role of empirical evidence for establishing P's truth would have to be to rule out worlds in which P is false. If there were no such worlds to be ruled out, we would not require evidence for P. But by hypothesis, P is necessary and so true in all metaphysically possible worlds. And on Stalnaker's view, the metaphysically possible worlds are all the worlds there are. So there can be no proposition that is true in all possible worlds, but that we require evidence to know. In this way, the motivation for Stalnaker's two dimensional account of the necessary a posteriori rests on his denying that there are metaphysically impossible Worlds. I argue that given his view of what possible worlds are, Stalnaker has no principled reason for denying that there are metaphysically impossible worlds. If I am right, this undercuts Stalnaker's motivation for his two dimensional account of the necessary a posteriori
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Timothy Williamson (2003). Vagueness in Reality. In Michael J. Loux & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Metaphysics. Oxford University Press
By Crawford L. Elder (2006). Conventionalism and Realism-Imitating Counterfactuals. Philosophical Quarterly 56 (222):1–15.
George Darby & Duncan Watson (2010). Lewis's Principle of Recombination: Reply to Efird and Stoneham. Dialectica 64 (3):435-445.
Brad J. Thompson (2010). The Spatial Content of Experience. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (1):146-184.
Erich H. Loewy (1997). Finding an Appropriate Ethic in a World of Moral Acquaintances. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 18 (1-2).
Thomas Baldwin (2001). On Considering a Possible World as Actual. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 75 (1):157–174.
Robert Stalnaker (2003). Ways a World Might Be: Metaphysical and Anti-Metaphysical Essays. Oxford University Press.
Robert Stalnaker (2001). On Considering a Possible World as Actual. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 75 (75):141-156.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads136 ( #22,721 of 1,780,894 )
Recent downloads (6 months)4 ( #140,788 of 1,780,894 )
How can I increase my downloads?