Minimising Existence: Or How to Stop Worrying and Love the Barcan Formulae

Annali Del Dipartimento di Filosofia 12:215-238 (2006)
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Abstract

The paper is intended to provide a full-scale defence of the infamous Barcan Formulae. Not only do I put forth some arguments, both semantic and metaphysical, against recent criticism; I also take pains at supplying some rationale in favour of the formal semantics underlying the Formulae, namely Possibilist quantification. Such a task is carried out through an argument for Compositional Nihilism, according to which nothing but mereological simples ever exists, and consequently through an informal sketch of the metaphysics of possible worlds grounded upon Compositional Nihilism. The paper closes by surveying the main reasons why the account championed here isn’t defective with respect to other possibilist accounts of existence and modality presently on stage

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