Fictionalism and Meinongianism

Theoria : An International Journal for Theory, History and Fundations of Science 36 (1):49-62 (2021)
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Fictionalism about a kind of disputed object is often motivated by the fact that the view interprets discourse about those objects literally without an ontological commitment to them. This paper argues that this motivation is inadequate because some viable alternatives to fictionalism have similar attractions. Meinongianism—the view that there are true statements about non-existent objects—is one such view. Meinongianism bears significant similarity to fictionalism, so intuitive doubts about its viability are difficult to sustain for fictionalists. Moreover, Meinongianism avoids some of fictionalism’s weaknesses, thus it is even preferable to fictionalism in some respects.



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Science Without Numbers: A Defence of Nominalism.Hartry Field - 1980 - Princeton, NJ, USA: Princeton University Press.
On Denoting.Bertrand Russell - 1905 - Mind 14 (56):479-493.
The Scientific Image.William Demopoulos & Bas C. van Fraassen - 1982 - Philosophical Review 91 (4):603.

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