Negative truths from positive facts

Australasian Journal of Philosophy 84 (2):249 – 265 (2006)
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Abstract

According to the truthmaker theory that we favour, all contingent truths are made true by existing facts or states of affairs. But if that is so, then it appears that we must accept the existence of the negative facts that are required to make negative truths (such as 'There is no hippopotamus in the room.') true. We deny the existence of negative facts, show how negative truths are made true by positive facts, point out where the (reluctant) advocates of negative facts (Russell, Armstrong, et al.) went wrong, and demonstrate the superiority of our solution to the alternatives.

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Charles R. Pigden
University of Otago

Citations of this work

Grounding nonexistence.Daniel Muñoz - 2020 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 63 (2):209-229.
Priority monism, partiality, and minimal truthmakers.A. R. J. Fisher - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (2):477-491.
Truthmakers, Realism and Ontology.Ross P. Cameron - 2008 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 62:107-128.
The Hard Road to Presentism.Jamin Asay & Sam Baron - 2014 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 95 (3):314-335.
Truthmaking without necessitation.Rachael Briggs - 2012 - Synthese 189 (1):11-28.

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References found in this work

Tractatus logico-philosophicus.Ludwig Wittgenstein, G. C. M. Colombo & Bertrand Russell - 1975 - London: Routledge and Kegan Paul. Edited by C. K. Ogden.
From an ontological point of view.John Heil - 2003 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Truth and truthmakers.D. M. Armstrong - 2004 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
A World of States of Affairs.D. M. Armstrong - 1993 - Philosophical Perspectives 7:429-440.
Universals and scientific realism.David Malet Armstrong - 1978 - New York: Cambridge University Press.

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