Pleonastic possible worlds

Philosophical Studies 164 (3):767-789 (2013)
The role of possible worlds in philosophy is hard to overestimate. Nevertheless, their nature and existence is very controversial. This is particularly serious, since their standard applications depend on there being sufficiently many of them. The paper develops an account of possible worlds on which it is particularly easy to believe in their existence: an account of possible worlds as pleonastic entities. Pleonastic entities are entities whose existence can be validly inferred from statements that neither refer to nor quantify over them as a matter of conceptual necessity. Definitions are proposed that ensure that this is the case for possible worlds.
Keywords Modality  Possible worlds, account of  Pleonastic entities  Schiffer, Stephen
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DOI 10.1007/s11098-012-9857-z
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Jon Barwise & John Perry (1981). Situations and Attitudes. Journal of Philosophy 78 (11):668-691.
Saul Kripke (2010). Naming and Necessity. In Darragh Byrne & Max Kölbel (eds.), Philosophy. Routledge 431-433.

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