Graham Priest. Towards Non-Being: The Logic and Metaphysics of Intentionality. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005. Pp. xv + 190. ISBN 0-19-926254-3 [Book Review]

Philosophia Mathematica 15 (1):94-134 (2007)
Graham Priest's new book is about things being about things—about what it is for things which are about things, such as beliefs, hopes and fears, and the like, and sentences which express them, to be about the things they are about, and about the range of things about which things which are about are about—in a word, intentionality. It has two principal objectives—to develop a formal semantics for intentionality, and to promote and defend a philosophical thesis about what exists and what does not. The semantics proposed is an extension of the familiar ‘world’1 semantics for modal logic. The philosophical thesis asserts that while some things exist, not everything does, or equivalently that while some things exist, some others do not. Priest, following Richard Routley , calls this Noneism to mark the divergence from Meinong's view, with which, nevertheless, it has a good deal in common. Meinong likewise denies that everything exists, and asserts that some things exist and some do not, but further holds that some things which, according to him, do not exist do have another ‘form of being’—they ‘subsist’ rather than exist—while other things which, according to him, do not exist do not exist simpliciter . Noneism avoids this complication, at least, and—or so Priest claims—avoids proliferating kinds of being altogether, requiring only a single kind of being and a distinction between two kinds of quantifier. In the noneist view, the basic universal and particular quantifiers are to be understood in an ontologically unloaded way, as ranging over a single all-inclusive domain of objects, some of which exist and some of which do not. The usual—existentially loaded—quantifiers are construed as a type of restricted quantifier, definable using an existence predicate: ‘GraphicxAx’ as ‘For some x, …
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DOI 10.1093/philmat/nkl027
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Graham Priest (2011). Against Against Nonbeing. Review of Symbolic Logic 4 (2):237-253.

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