Ontology and the word 'exist': Uneasy relations

Philosophia Mathematica 18 (1):74-101 (2009)
An extensive exploration of the special properties of ‘exist’ is here undertaken. Two of several results are: Denying that `exist’ has associated with it a set of necessary and sufficient conditions has seemed to a number of philosophers to imply metaphysical nihilism . This is because it has seemed that without such conditions the target domain of `existence’ is arbitrarily open. I show this is wrong. Second, my analysis sheds light on the puzzling question of what we are asking when we ask of something, `Does it exist?’ and mean that question in an ontically relevant way
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DOI 10.1093/philmat/nkp011
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References found in this work BETA
Hilary Putnam (1975). The Meaning of 'Meaning'. Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science 7:131-193.
Eli Hirsch (2005). Physical-Object Ontology, Verbal Disputes, and Common Sense. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 70 (1):67–97.

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Citations of this work BETA
Joshua D. K. Brown (forthcoming). Natural Objects. Journal of the American Philosophical Association:1-18.

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