Truths, facts and values

Philosophy 82 (4):625-641 (2007)
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The paper suggests a revival of the 17th century distinction between truths of reason and truths of fact. Some points are made which seem to me show it obviously false that a fact is merely a true proposition. Truths of fact, contingent truths, are rightly seen as corresponding to facts. Other truths, including ethical truths of right and wrong are, if true, necessarily true. In general, necessarily ture statements, including those of mathematics are wrongly construed as factual. Ethics and aesthetics, it is maintained, can be construed as noncognitive; but not because claims in these domains are other than claims to truth. They are, in large part, not claims to knowledge, which does not bar them from being claims to truth.



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