Putting Metaphysics First: Essays on Metaphysics and Epistemology

Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press (2009)
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Introduction -- Metaphysics -- "Ostrich nominalism"' or "mirage realism"? -- Postscript to "Ostrich nominalism" or "mirage realism"? -- Aberrations of the realism debate -- Postscript to "aberrations of the realism debate" -- Underdetermination and commonsense realism -- Scientificrealism -- Postscript to "scientific realism" -- Incommensurability and the priority of metaphysics -- Postscript to "incommensurability and the priority of metaphysics" -- Global response dependency and worldmaking -- The metaphysics of nonfactualism -- The metaphysics of truth -- Moral realism : a naturalistic perspective -- Natural kinds and biological realisms -- Resurrecting biological essentialism -- Epistemology -- Naturalism and the a priori -- No place for the a priori -- Intuitions -- On determining what there isn't.



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Incommensurability and the Priority of Metaphysics*

This chapter rejects ‘Incommensurability’ — the semantic doctrine attributed to Kuhn and Feyerabend, who also subscribe to the neo-Kantian metaphysical doctrine of ‘Constructivism’. According to Constructivism, we make ‘phenomenal’ worlds with our theories. Different theories make differen... see more

No Place for the A Priori*

This chapter argues that all knowledge is empirical. It attempts to undermine the motivation for the a priori that comes from examples in mathematics, philosophy, and logic. In particular, it argues that logic can be seen as empirical if rule-circular arguments are allowed. And a priorists... see more


Intuition mongering is common in the theory of reference and in philosophy generally. Why is this appropriate? And why is it appropriate for linguists to take intuitions as the main evidence for a grammar. The Chomskian answer to the latter question is that the intuitions are derived by a ... see more

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Michael Devitt
CUNY Graduate Center

Citations of this work

Experimental Semantics.Michael Devitt - 2011 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 82 (2):418 - 435.
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Naturalism, fallibilism, and the a priori.Lisa Warenski - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 142 (3):403-426.

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