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Synthese 198 (3):2427-2447 (2019)
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Abstract

Veritism, the position that truth is necessary for epistemic acceptability, seems to be in tension with the observation that much of our best science is not, strictly speaking, true when interpreted literally. This generates a paradox: truth is necessary for epistemic acceptability; the claims of science have to be taken literally; much of what science produces is not literally true and yet it is acceptable. We frame Elgin’s project in True Enough as being motivated by, and offering a particular resolution to, this paradox. We discuss the paradox with a focus on scientific models and argue that there is another resolution available which is compatible with retaining veritism: rejecting the idea that scientific models should be interpreted literally.

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Author Profiles

Roman Frigg
London School of Economics
James Nguyen
Stockholm University

Citations of this work

Recent Work in the Epistemology of Understanding.Michael Hannon - 2021 - American Philosophical Quarterly 58 (3):269-290.
Understanding Philosophy.Michael Hannon & James Nguyen - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
The Truth About Better Understanding?Lewis Ross - 2021 - Erkenntnis 88 (2):747-770.
Do fictions explain?James Nguyen - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):3219-3244.

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