Synthese 85 (3):355 - 389 (1990)

Authors
Christopher Menzel
Texas A&M University
Abstract
Actualism is the doctrine that the only things there are, that have being in any sense, are the things that actually exist. In particular, actualism eschews possibilism, the doctrine that there are merely possible objects. It is widely held that one cannot both be an actualist and at the same time take possible world semantics seriously — that is, take it as the basis for a genuine theory of truth for modal languages, or look to it for insight into the modal structure of reality. For possible world semantics, it is supposed, commits one to possibilism. In this paper I take issue with this view. To the contrary, I argue that one can take possible world semantics seriously without any commitment to possible worlds or possibilism and hence remain in full compliance with actualist scruples. Moreover, one can do so without without invoking either "ersatz" worlds or haecceities.
Keywords actualism  possible world semantics  ontological commitment
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DOI 10.1007/BF00484834
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References found in this work BETA

Actualism and Possible Worlds.Alvin Plantinga - 1976 - Theoria 42 (1-3):139-160.
A Problem for Actualism About Possible Worlds.Alan McMichael - 1983 - Philosophical Review 92 (1):49-66.
Shifting Situations and Shaken Attitudes.Jon Barwise & John Perry - 1985 - Linguistics and Philosophy 8 (1):105--161.
On Sets and Worlds: A Reply to Menzel.Patrick Grim - 1986 - Analysis 46 (4):186 - 191.
From Worlds to Situations.John Perry - 1986 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 15 (1):83 - 107.

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Citations of this work BETA

In Defense of the Possibilism–Actualism Distinction.Christopher Menzel - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (7):1971-1997.
Actualism.Christopher Menzel - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Modal Fragmentalism.Samuele Iaquinto - 2020 - The Philosophical Quarterly 70 (280):570-587.

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