Quantum metaphysical indeterminacy and worldly incompleteness

Synthese 197:4251-4264 (2020)
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Abstract

An influential theory has it that metaphysical indeterminacy occurs just when reality can be made completely precise in multiple ways. That characterization is formulated by employing the modal apparatus of ersatz possible worlds. As quantum physics taught us, reality cannot be made completely precise. I meet the challenge by providing an alternative theory which preserves the use of ersatz worlds but rejects the precisificational view of metaphysical indeterminacy. The upshot of the proposed theory is that it is metaphysically indeterminate whether p just in case it is neither true nor false that p, and no terms in ‘p’ are semantically defective. In other words, metaphysical indeterminacy arises when the world cannot be adequately described by a complete set of sentences defined in a semantically nondefective language. Moreover, the present theory provides a reductive analysis of metaphysical indeterminacy, unlike its influential predecessor. Finally, I argue that any adequate logic of a language with an indeterminate subject matter is neither compositional nor bivalent.

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Alessandro Torza
National Autonomous University of Mexico

Citations of this work

Modelling Deep Indeterminacy.George Darby & Martin Pickup - 2021 - Synthese 198:1685–1710.
Quantum Metaphysical Indeterminacy.Claudio Calosi & Jessica Wilson - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (10):2599–2627.
Quantum Indeterminacy and the Double-slit Experiment.Claudio Calosi & Jessica Wilson - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (10):3291-3317.
Quantum Indeterminacy.Claudio Calosi & Cristian Mariani - 2021 - Philosophy Compass 16 (4):e12731.

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On the Plurality of Worlds.David Lewis - 1986 - Wiley-Blackwell.
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Vagueness, Truth and Logic.Kit Fine - 1975 - Synthese 30 (3-4):265-300.
On the Plurality of Worlds.William G. Lycan - 1988 - Journal of Philosophy 85 (1):42-47.

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