Truthmaking: With and Without Counterpart Theory

In Barry Loewer & Jonathan Schaffer (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to David Lewis. Oxford, UK: Blackwell. pp. 159–187 (2015)
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According to the Truthmaker Principle: every truth has a truthmaker. Attempts to come to grips with the Truthmaker Principle played a prominent role in Lewis’s metaphysical writings over the last fifteen years of his career. Although Lewis agreed that the truth of propositions must somehow be ontologically grounded, the Truthmaker Principle was too strong: it conflicted with two of Lewis’s most fundamental metaphysical assumptions, the uniqueness of composition and the Humean denial of necessary connections. Lewis endorsed instead a weaker principle: Truth Supervenes on Being. But towards the end of his career, he changed course, noting that his critique of the Truthmaker Principle rested on essentialist assumptions that he, as a counterpart theorist, does not accept. Once freed from those assumptions, a counterpart theorist can accept the Truthmaker Principle after all without buying into unmereological composition and mysterious necessary connections.



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Phillip Bricker
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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References found in this work

On the Plurality of Worlds.David K. Lewis - 1986 - Malden, Mass.: Wiley-Blackwell.
Writing the Book of the World.Theodore Sider - 2011 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
A World of States of Affairs.D. M. Armstrong - 1997 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
Essence and modality.Kit Fine - 1994 - Philosophical Perspectives 8 (Logic and Language):1-16.
On the Plurality of Worlds.David Lewis - 1986 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 178 (3):388-390.

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