Nonexistent Objects

Edited by David Sanson (Illinois State University)
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  1. added 2020-05-25
    Pegasus Explained Away.Mark Ressler - manuscript
    The consequences of Quine's criterion of ontological commitment epitomized in his treatment of the term 'Pegasus' in "On What There Is" are evaluated in terms of Quine's own work, in particular in "The Variable" and "Variables Explained Away". There is a cost to maintaining this criterion with regard to the empirical consequences of some non-existent objects, given considerations prompted by Quine's holism. This cost can be reduced by adopting a noneist position according to which non-existent objects can be values of (...)
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  2. added 2020-04-27
    The Objects of Thought by Tim Crane Oxford University Press 2014, Pp. 208, £27.50 ISBN: 978-0-19-968274-4. [REVIEW]Guy Longworth - 2015 - Philosophy 90 (1):146-151.
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  3. added 2020-04-23
    Now, Imagine an Actually Existing Unicorn: On Russellian Worries for Modal Meinongianism.Andreas de Jong - forthcoming - Axiomathes:1-16.
    Modal Meinongianism provides the semantics of sentences involving intentional verbs Priest (Towards Nonbeing, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2016). To that end, Modal Meinongianism employs a pointed non-normal quantified modal logic model. Like earlier Meinongian views Modal Meinongianism has a characterisation principle (QCP), that claims that any condition whatsoever is satisfied by some object in some world. Recently, Everett (The nonexistent, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2013, 169, p. 36) has proposed an argument against QCP that, if successful, gives rise to problems (...)
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  4. added 2019-12-30
    Review of John Woods, Truth in Fiction: Rethinking its Logic. [REVIEW]Gilbert Plumer - 2020 - Informal Logic 40 (1):147-156.
  5. added 2019-12-28
    The Beauty of Philosophy.Bryan Frances - forthcoming - Philosophy is Awesome.
  6. added 2019-10-07
    Extended Modal Realism - a New Solution to the Problem of Intentional Inexistence.Andrew D. Thomas - forthcoming - Philosophia:1-12.
    Kriegel described the problem of intentional inexistence as one of the 'perennial problems of philosophy' (Kriegel Philosophical Perspectives 21(1), 307–340, 2007: 307). In the same paper, Kriegel alluded to a modal realist solution to the problem of intentional inexistence. However, Kriegel does not state by name who defends the kind of modal realist solution he has in mind. Kriegel also points out that even what he believes to be the strongest version of modal realism does not pass the 'principle of (...)
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  7. added 2019-09-12
    Sylvan's Jungle Volume 1: Exploring Meinong's Jungle and Beyond.Maureen Eckert - 2018 - International: Synthese Library.
    In this first volume of The Sylvan Jungle, the editors present a scholarly edition of the first chapter, "Exploring Meinong's Jungle," of Richard Routley's 1000-plus page book, Exploring Meinong's Jungle and Beyond. Going against the Quinean orthodoxy, Routley’s aim was to support Meinong’s idea that we can truthfully refer to non-existent and even impossible objects, like Superman, unicorns and the (infamous) round-square cupola on Berkeley College. The tools of non-classical logic at Routley’s disposal enabled him to update Meinong’s project for (...)
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  8. added 2019-07-18
    Grounding Nonexistence.Daniel Muñoz - 2020 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 63 (2):209-229.
    Contingent negative existentials give rise to a notorious paradox. I formulate a version in terms of metaphysical grounding: nonexistence can't be fundamental, but nothing can ground it. I then argue for a new kind of solution, expanding on work by Kit Fine. The key idea is that negative existentials are contingently zero-grounded – that is to say, they are grounded, but not by anything, and only in the right conditions. If this is correct, it follows that grounding cannot be an (...)
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  9. added 2019-06-06
    Nonexistent Objects. [REVIEW]W. D. - 1981 - Review of Metaphysics 35 (1):151-153.
    This is a forthright and refreshing book. It aims to bring the clarifying power of analytic philosophy to the luxuriant variety in one part of Meinong's ontology. Parson's title is meant to be read literally: it is not propositions, numbers, universals or sets, but only particular objects whose nonexistence concerns him. Parsons gives two reasons for believing that there are nonexistent objects. First, we match objects against the sets of their properties. When every existing object has been listed, we carry (...)
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  10. added 2018-12-11
    On Inadvertently Created Abstracta, Fictional Storytelling, and Scientific Hypothesizing.Jeffrey Goodman - 2017 - Res Philosophica 94 (1):177-188.
    In my “Creatures of Fiction, Objects of Myth”, I present and defend an argument for thinking that mythical creationism—the view that mythical objects like phlogiston and Vulcan are abstract artifacts—is false. One intriguing sort of objection to my argument has been recently put forth by Zvolenszky ; she claims that a crucial premise is seen to be unjustified once one considers the phenomena of inadvertently created abstracta—specifically, inadvertently created fictional characters. I argue here that even if we admit inadvertently created (...)
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  11. added 2018-10-10
    Even Nothing is Something.Jim Unah - 2006 - University of Lagos Press.
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  12. added 2018-10-10
    A New Argument Against the Existence Requirement.Takashi Yagisawa - 2005 - Analysis 65 (1):39–42.
    It may appear that in order to be any way at all, a thing must exist. A possible – worlds version of this claim goes as follows: (E) For every x, for every possible world w, Fx at w only if x exists at w. Here and later in (R), the letter ‘F’ is used as a schematic letter to be replaced with a one – place predicate. There are two arguments against (E). The first is by analogy. Socrates is (...)
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  13. added 2018-10-10
    The Theory of Objects as Commonsense.Richard Routley - 1979 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 9:1-22.
    Meinong's theory of objects offers an alternative to entrenched logical theory which is nonreductionist, antiverificationist and commonsense. A beginning is made on proving that the theory is a commonsense one. This involves characterising refined commonsense and commonsense philosophy, upon sharpening the theses of the theory of objects, and indicating how these theses can, and do, fit into a commonsense position.
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  14. added 2018-09-11
    Deep Indeterminacy in Physics and Fiction.George Darby, Martin Pickup & Jon Robson - 2017 - In Otávio Bueno, Steven French, George Darby & Dean Rickles (eds.), Thinking About Science, Reflecting on Art: Bringing Aesthetics and Philosophy of Science Together. Routledge.
    Indeterminacy in its various forms has been the focus of a great deal of philosophical attention in recent years. Much of this discussion has focused on the status of vague predicates such as ‘tall’, ‘bald’, and ‘heap’. It is determinately the case that a seven-foot person is tall and that a five-foot person is not tall. However, it seems difficult to pick out any determinate height at which someone becomes tall. How best to account for this phenomenon is, of course, (...)
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  15. added 2018-05-23
    Husserl’s Early Theory of Intentionality as a Relational Theory.Andrea Marchesi - 2018 - Grazer Philosophische Studien (3):343-367.
    This paper examines Husserl’s theory of intentionality as it is developed in Logical Investigations and other early writings. In Section 1, the author attempts to capture the core of Husserl’s concept of intentionality. Section 2 is devoted to a detailed analysis of the account of intentional relation developed in the fifth Investigation. In Section 3, the author tries to flesh out what is meant by the claim in the sixth Investigation that the designation ‘object’ is a relative one. In Section (...)
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  16. added 2018-05-17
    Review of Anthony Everett, The Nonexistent. [REVIEW]Catharine Abell - 2016 - British Journal of Aesthetics 56 (2):209-212.
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  17. added 2018-03-01
    Empty Representations: Reference and Non-Existence By Manuel García-Carpintero and Genoveva Martí. [REVIEW]T. Parent - 2018 - Analysis 78 (1):172-173.
  18. added 2018-02-16
    God, Mind, and Logical Space: A Revisionary Approach to Divinity.István Aranyosi - 2013 - Palgrave-Macmillan.
    In God, Mind and Logical Space István Aranyosi takes the reader on a journey for the mind by revisiting the fundamental questions and the everlasting debates in philosophy of religion, ontology, and the philosophy of mind. The first part deals with issues in ontology, and the author puts forward a radical view according to which all thinkable objects and states of affairs have an equal claim to existence in a way that renders existence a relative notion. In the second part (...)
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  19. added 2018-02-16
    Scientific Models and Fictional Objects.Gabriele Contessa - 2010 - Synthese 172 (2):215-229.
    In this paper, I distinguish scientific models in three kinds on the basis of their ontological status—material models, mathematical models and fictional models, and develop and defend an account of fictional models as fictional objects—i.e. abstract objects that stand for possible concrete objects.
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  20. added 2017-11-24
    More Things in Heaven and Earth.Barry Smith - 1995 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 50 (1):187-201.
    Philosophers in the field of analytic metaphysics have begun gradually to come to terms with the fact that there are entities in a range of categories not dreamt of in the set-theory and predicate-logic-based ontologies of their forefathers. Examples of such “entia minora” would include: boundaries, places, events, states holes, shadows, individual colour- and tone-instances (tropes), together with combinations of these and associated simple and complex universal species or essences, states of affairs, judgment-contents, and myriad abstract structures of the sorts (...)
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  21. added 2017-11-06
    Chapter 5: Intensional Transitive Verbs and Their 'Objects'.Friederike Moltmann - 2013 - In Abstract Objects and the semantics of Natural Language. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    This chapter gives a truthmaker-based account of the semantics of 'reifying' quantifiers like 'something' when they act as complements of intensional transitive verbs ('need', 'look for'). It argues that such quantifiers range over 'variable satisfiers' of the attitudinal object described by the verb (e.g. the need or the search).
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  22. added 2017-03-21
    Ficta as Contingently Nonconcrete.Lightfield Ceth - 2014 - Organon F: Medzinárodný Časopis Pre Analytickú Filozofiu 21 (4):431-457.
    Fictional realism allows direct reference theorists to provide a straightfor- ward analysis of the semantics of fictional discourse by admitting into their ontology a set of objects (ficta) that serve as the referents of fictional names. Ficta may be modeled using an axiomatic object theory, but actualist interpretations of the formalism have been the subject of recent objections. In this paper, I provide an interpretation of object theory’s formalism that is consistent with actualism and avoids these objections. Drawing on insights (...)
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  23. added 2017-03-20
    Non-Existent Objects and Epistemological Ontology.William J. Rapaport - 1985 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 25 (1):61-95.
    This essay examines the role of non-existent objects in "epistemological ontology" — the study of the entities that make thinking possible. An earlier revision of Meinong's Theory of Objects is reviewed, Meinong's notions of Quasisein and Außersein are discussed, and a theory of Meinongian objects as "combinatorially possible" entities is presented.
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  24. added 2017-01-26
    Are Possible, Non Actual Objects Real?Ruth Barcan Marcus - 1997 - Revue Internationale de Philosophie 51 (200):251-257.
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  25. added 2017-01-17
    Nonexistent Objects.Fabrizio Mondadori - 1985 - Philosophical Review 94 (3):427.
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  26. added 2017-01-15
    Friedlands Sterne Oder Facta Und Ficta.Rudolf Haller - 1983 - Erkenntnis 19 (1-3):153 - 165.
    The purpose of this article is to try to get a clearer picture of a criterion which may be used to distinguish between genuine names of objects and pseudo-names, between names of existent and non-existent objects, between facts and fictitious states of affairs. Meinong's idea of incomplete objects serves as the theoretical notion for the description of fictitious objects. The distinction between imported (immigrant) and native objects in fiction is denied and a necessary connection between fictious and real objects maintained.
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  27. added 2017-01-14
    The Nonexistent. By Anthony Everett. (Oxford: OUP, 2013. Pp. Viii + 246.) (Book Review).Maria E. Reicher - 2015 - Philosophical Quarterly 65 (261):870-872.
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  28. added 2017-01-14
    Meinong on Aesthetic Objects and the Knowledge-Value of Emotions.Venanzio Raspa - 2013 - Humana.Mente. Journal of Philosophical Studies 25:211-234.
    In this paper I trace a theoretical path along Meinong’s works, by means of which the notion of aesthetic object as well as the changes this notion undergoes along Meinong’s output will be highlighted. Focusing especially on "Über emotionale Präsentation", I examine, on the one hand, the cognitive function of emotions, on the other hand, the objects apprehended by aesthetic emotions, i.e. aesthetic objects. These are ideal objects of higher order, which have, even though not primarily, the capacity to attract (...)
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  29. added 2016-12-12
    Two‐Dimensional Modal Meinongianism.Wolfgang Barz - 2016 - Ratio 29 (3):249-267.
    The aim of this paper is to show that Priest's modal Meinongianism might benefit from joining forces with two-dimensionalism. For this purpose, I propose a two-dimensional solution to a problem for modal Meinongianism that is posed by Beall, Sauchelli, and Milne, and show that, by taking recourse to two-dimensionalism, divergent intuitions about the question of whether fictional characters might exist can be reconciled. Moreover, two-dimensionalism helps to rebut Kroon's argument to the conclusion that modal Meinongianism cannot rule out the odd (...)
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  30. added 2016-12-08
    McGinn on Existence.Inwagen Peter van - 2008 - Philosophical Quarterly 58 (230):36 - 58.
    I compare the theory of existence and being (and of non-existence and non-being) presented in Colin McGinn's 'Logical Properties' with those of well known predecessors such as Quine, Frege and Meinong. More recently, neo-Meinongians have held that being and existence are different concepts, and that although nothing lach bang, there are things which do not exist; possibilists have held that there are mere possibilia, things which possibly exist but do not actually exist. I examine a thesis advanced by McGinn which (...)
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  31. added 2016-12-05
    Thinking About Different Nonexistents of the Same Kind: Reid's Account of the Imagination and its Nonexistent Objects.Marina Folescu - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (3):627-649.
    How is it that, as fiction readers, we are nonplussed by J. K. Rowling's prescription to imagine Ronan, Bane, and Magorian, three different centaurs of the Forbidden Forrest at Hogwarts? It is usually held in the philosophical literature on fictional discourse that singular imaginings of fictional objects are impossible, given the blatant nonexistence of such objects. In this paper, I have a dual purpose: on the one hand, to show that, without being committed to Meinongeanism, we can explain the phenomenon (...)
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  32. added 2016-07-06
    The Problem of Nonexistence: Truthmaking or Semantics? Critical Notice of The Objects of Thought, by Tim Crane.Lee Walters - 2015 - Disputatio 7 (41):231-245.
    Tim Crane's The Objects of Thought is, I think, a much needed corrective to standard ways that analytic philosophers think about nonexistence. It starts from our common sense thought and talk, and tries to carve out a position that can defend this starting point in the face of criticism. It is well-written, a pleasure to read, and largely clear. I would recommend it to anyone interested in the problems of nonexistence. In §1 I sketch Crane's central ideas about the nonexistent, (...)
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  33. added 2016-02-26
    On Modal Meinongianism.Thibaut Giraud - 2016 - Synthese 193 (10).
    Modal Meinongianism is a form of Meinongianism whose main supporters are Graham Priest and Francesco Berto. The main idea of modal Meinongianism is to restrict the logical deviance of Meinongian non-existent objects to impossible worlds and thus prevent it from “contaminating” the actual world: the round square is round and not round, but not in the actual world, only in an impossible world. In the actual world, supposedly, no contradiction is true. I will show that Priest’s semantics, as originally formulated (...)
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  34. added 2015-12-08
    Review: Terence Parsons, Nonexistent Objects. [REVIEW]George Bealer - 1984 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 49 (2):652-655.
  35. added 2015-10-21
    Who’s Afraid of Non-Existent Manifestations?Michele Paolini Paoletti - 2016 - In Francesco F. Calemi (ed.), Metaphysics and Scientific Realism: Essays in Honour of David Malet Armstrong. De Gruyter. pp. 193-206.
    I shall defend in this paper the thesis that, if there are irreducible powers such as the power to produce a certain object (generative powers), then there are objects that do not exist and they are part of the fundamental level of the universe. Thus, generative powers come together with Meinongianism. After having clarified my argument, I shall examine and criticize Armstrong (1997)’s attempt to reduce powers to other sorts of entities. Finally, I shall deal with five accounts of generative (...)
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  36. added 2015-09-19
    Doubts About One’s Own Existence.Wolfgang Barz - 2014 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 57 (5-6):645-668.
    The aim of this paper is to show that it is not irrational to doubt one’s own existence, even in the face of introspective evidence to the effect that one is currently in a certain mental state. For this purpose, I will outline a situation in which I do not exist, but which cannot be ruled out on the basis of any evidence available to me—including introspective evidence about my current mental states. I use this ‘superskeptical scenario,’ as I will (...)
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  37. added 2015-09-19
    Aussersein des reinen Gegenstandes – ein Berührungspunkt zwischen Meinong und Quine.Wolfgang Barz - 2008 - Zeitschrift für Philosophische Forschung 62 (3):358-384.
    Zusammenfassung. Im ersten Teil meines Aufsatzes versuche ich zu zeigen, dass Meinongs Satz vom Aussersein des reinen Gegenstandes auf Quines These hinausläuft, dass Variablen, die im Einflussbereich eines intentionalen Verbs liegen, nicht durch Quantoren gebunden werden können, die sich außerhalb dieses Bereichs befinden. Im zweiten Teil diskutiere ich eine Schwierigkeit für meine Interpretation: Meinong hält – im Gegensatz zu Quine – an der Idee fest, dass intentionale Zustände Relationen zwischen Personen und Gegenständen sind. Hätte Meinong diese Idee nicht fallenlassen müssen, (...)
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  38. added 2015-09-04
    Analytic Philosophy of Fiction: Editor's Introduction.Francesco Orilia - 2012 - Revue Internationale de Philosophie 262 (4):481-482.
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  39. added 2015-08-26
    Fictional Realism and Negative Existentials.Tatjana von Solodkoff - 2014 - In Manuel García-Carpintero & Genoveva Martí (eds.), Empty Representations: Reference and Non-Existence. Oxford University Press. pp. 333-352.
    In this paper I confront what I take to be the crucial challenge for fictional realism, i.e. the view that fictional characters exist. This is the problem of accounting for the intuition that corresponding negative existentials such as ‘Sherlock Holmes does not exist’ are true (when, given fictional realism, taken literally they seem false). I advance a novel and detailed form of the response according to which we take them to mean variants of such claims as: there is no concrete (...)
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  40. added 2015-08-26
    Hetherington on Possible Objects.Michael Pendlebury - 1985 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 63 (4):494 – 495.
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  41. added 2015-08-21
    What is the Problem of Non-Existence?Tim Crane - 2012 - Philosophia 40 (3):417-434.
    It is widely held that there is a problem of talking about or otherwise representing things that not exist. But what exactly is this problem? This paper presents a formulation of the problem in terms of the conflict between the fact that there are truths about non-existent things and the fact that truths must be answerable to reality, how things are. Given this, the problem of singular negative existential statements is no longer the central or most difficult aspect of the (...)
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  42. added 2015-08-05
    Are There Non-Existent Entities?Theodore J. Everett - 2005 - In Larry Lee Blackman (ed.), The Philosophy of Panayot Butchvarov: a collegial evaluation. Edwin Mellen Press. pp. 3-19.
    There are things of which it is true to say that there are no such things. How can we resolve this paradox? Panayot Butchvarov argues that there are objects of reference that are not also entities, where the former must merely be thinkable but the latter must be indefinitely re-identifiable. This paper argues that fictional and many other unreal objects are indeed indefinitely re-identifiable, so they must be counted as existing things on Butchvarov's theory. The paradox is best resolved by (...)
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  43. added 2015-07-28
    Paradise on the Cheap. Ascriptivism About Ficta.Michele Paolini Paoletti - 2016 - In Mauro Antonelli & Marian David (eds.), Existence, Fiction, Assumption. Meinongian Themes and the History of Austrian Philosophy. Meinong Studies, vol. VI. de Gruyter. pp. 99-140.
    In this article I shall present a Meinong-inspired theory of fictional objects. This theory is based on two ideas: fictional objects are mental objects, i.e., they depend for their identity conditions on minded subjects thinking of them; they bear properties in two different ways, i.e., by instantiating properties and by having properties “ascribed” to them. In my perspective, ascription relations hold (at least) between an object, a property and a minded subject. After having presented some data about fictional discourse, I (...)
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  44. added 2015-07-14
    Modal Meinongianism and Characterization.Francesco Berto & Graham Priest - 2014 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 90 (1):183-200.
    In this paper we reply to arguments of Kroon (“Characterization and Existence in Modal Meinongianism”. Grazer Philosophische Studien 86, 23–34) to the effect that Modal Meinongianism cannot do justice to Meinongian claims such as that the golden mountain is golden, and that it does not exist.
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  45. added 2015-05-26
    Commentary On: Jesse Bohl's "What Are We to Do About Traditional Logic?".Gilbert Plumer - 2000 - In Christopher W. Tindale, Hans V. Hansen & Elmar Sveda (eds.), Argumentation at the Century's Turn [CD-ROM]. Ontario Society for the Study of Argumentation. pp. 1-4.
  46. added 2015-04-27
    Aristotle on Being.George Couvalis - forthcoming - Modern Greek Studies (Australia and New Zealand).
    Aristotle explains existence through postulating essences that are intrinsic and percep- tion independent. I argue that his theory is more plausible than Hume’s and Russell’s theories of existence. Russell modifies Hume’s theory because he wants to allow for the existence of mathematical objects. However, Russell’s theory facilitates a problematic collapse of ontology into epistemology, which has become a feature of much analytic philosophy. This collapse obscures the nature of truth. Aristotle is to be praised for starting with a clear account (...)
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  47. added 2015-04-26
    Another God, Chimerae, Goat-Stags, and Man-Lions: A Seventeenth-Century Debate About Impossible Objects.John P. Doyle - 1995 - Review of Metaphysics 48 (4):771 - 808.
    Prima facie it seems easy to understand what he had in mind when he spoke of accidental being and being as true. Accidental or incidental being, what the Latins would later call ens per accidens, was in fact a juxtaposition of two or more categorical beings. As such it lacked a unified essence and thus it lacked genuine being. It was being "only in name." Being as true, he told us, was in the synthesis of the intellect, that is, the (...)
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  48. added 2015-04-21
    On Being and Nothing.José A. Benardete - 1954 - Review of Metaphysics 7 (3):363 - 367.
    Metaphysical inquiry is indebted to the sceptical dialectic for the earlier moments in its investigation. Through that dialectic the field is cleared of the dubitable. We shall here install Descartes' first Meditation as the initial moment in our program. What if all is a dream? Hume supplies our second moment. Immediate experience, such as sensations of color, is undeniable, and that alone. Our third moment is the familiar retrenchment of Hume to a solipsism of the present instant. The past, like (...)
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  49. added 2015-04-11
    Ficta Versus Possibilia.Alberto Voltolini - 1994 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 48 (1):75-104.
    Although both belong to the domain of the nonexistent, there is an ontological distinction between ficta and possibilia. Ficta are a particular kind of abstract objects, namely constructed abstract objects which generically depend on authors for their subsistence. Moreover, they are essentially incomplete entities, in that they are correlates of finite sets of properties. - On the other hand, possibilia are concrete objects. Being a possible object is indeed being an entity that might have existed, that is, that might have (...)
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  50. added 2015-04-06
    Salmon on Hob and Nob.David Friedell - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (1):213-220.
    Nathan Salmon appeals to his theory of mythical objects as part of an attempt to solve Geach’s Hob–Nob puzzle. In this paper I argue that, even if Salmon’s theory of mythical objects is correct, his attempt to solve the puzzle is unsuccessful. I also refute an original variant of his proposal. The discussion indicates that it is difficult (if not impossible) to devise a genuine solution to the puzzle that relies on mythical objects.
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