Grazer Philosophische Studien 95 (4):520–540 (2018)

Mohsen Zamani
Institute for Research in Fundamental Sciences
There are two main theories of ontological commitment: the quantifier view, and the truthmaker view. Since there are some truths that apparently commit us to certain entities, but actually do not, any ontological commitment theory must also contain an ontological reduction theory. Advocates of the quantifier view propose the paraphrasing method of reduction, while advocates of the truthmaker view propose the supervenience method. In this paper, after a brief discussion of the quantifier view, I propose a modified version of truthmaker-based ontology, and show that a plausible account of the supervenience method can be deduced from my version. I then show that the supervenience method could explain why the paraphrasing method is successful, albeit that there are some cases in which the supervenience method works but the paraphrasing method does not, or so it seems prime facie. I also argue that according to the truthmaker view we must accept composite objects as something over and above the particles which constitute them.
Keywords Truthmaker view  The quantifier view  Ontological commitment  supervenience  paraphrasing  Totality state of affairs
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DOI 10.1163/18756735-000055
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