Synthese 198 (2):735-757 (2016)

Douglas Edwards
Utica College
In this paper I investigate the claim that truth is a relational property. What does this claim really mean? What is its import?—Is it a basic feature of the concept of truth; or a distinctive feature of the correspondence theory of truth; or even both? After introducing some general ideas about truth, I begin by highlighting an ambiguity in current uses of the term ‘relational property’ in the truth debate, and show that we need to distinguish two separate ideas: that truth is a relational property, and that truth is an extrinsic property. I go on to examine what both of these ideas are in more detail, and consider what would need to hold for truth to be in either of these categories. I then discern where all the main competitors in the truth debate stand on these issues. In doing so we learn more about these views and what they entail, and build a general picture of what stances different theories of truth take on whether truth is extrinsic or relational. Moreover, in doing this we will be able to answer one of the questions with which we began: whether truth’s being extrinsic or relational is something that, if accepted, lends support to the correspondence theory of truth. We will see that this is not so, and discern some interesting variations between various theories of truth on the issues of whether truth is extrinsic or relational. Following this we will be in a better position to judge whether the notions of extrinsicality or relationality are basic features of the concept of truth. In the final part of the paper I argue that, even if we are not in a position to conclude that they are basic features, they are features that any prospective theory of truth needs to take seriously.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Reprint years 2021
DOI 10.1007/s11229-016-1277-8
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Translate to english
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 70,163
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Truth and Objectivity.Crispin Wright - 1992 - Harvard University Press.
The Logical Basis of Metaphysics.Michael Dummett - 1991 - Harvard University Press.
Truth.Paul Horwich - 1990 - Clarendon Press.
Truth and Ontology.Trenton Merricks - 2007 - Oxford University Press.

View all 70 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Recognizing "Truth" in Chinese Philosophy.Lajos L. Brons - 2016 - Logos and Episteme 7 (3):273-286.
Pluralism and the Absence of Truth.Jeremy Wyatt - 2014 - Dissertation, University of Connecticut
Against Truth.Jamin Asay - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (1):147-164.
Kant on the Nominal Definition of Truth.Alberto Vanzo - 2010 - Kant Studien 101 (2):147-166.
Truth: The Deflationary Theory Vs. The Semantic Theory.Glen Adam Hoffmann - 2003 - Dissertation, University of Toronto (Canada)
Deflationist Truth is Substantial.Nicholas Unwin - 2013 - Acta Analytica 28 (3):257-266.
Truth as a Substantive Property.Douglas Edwards - 2013 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 91 (2):279-294.
Dosegljivost Resnice.A. Ule - 2004 - Znanstveni Inštitut Filozofske Fakultete.
Truth.Bradley Dowden - 2004 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
The Transparency of Truth.ME Kalderon - 1997 - Mind 106 (423):475-497.


Added to PP index

Total views
78 ( #148,395 of 2,506,517 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
4 ( #170,106 of 2,506,517 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes