On the mind dependence of truth

Erkenntnis 65 (3):301 - 318 (2006)
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Abstract

The claim that truth is mind dependent has some initial plausibility only if truth bearers are taken to be mind dependent entities such as beliefs or statements. Even on that assumption, however, the claim is not uncontroversial. If it is spelled out as the thesis that “in a world devoid of mind nothing would be true”, then everything depends on how the phrase ‘true in world w’ is interpreted. If ‘A is true in w’ is interpreted as ‘A is true of w’ (i.e. ‘w satisfies A’s truth conditions’, the claim need not be true. If on the other hand it is interpreted as ‘A is true of w and exists in w’ then the claim is trivially true, though devoid of any antirealistic efficacy. Philosophers like Heidegger and Rorty, who hold that truth is mind dependent but reality is not, must regard such principles as “A if and only if it is true that A” as only contingently true, which may be a good reason to reject the mind dependence of truth anyway.

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Diego Marconi
Università degli Studi di Torino

References found in this work

Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature.Richard Rorty - 1979 - Princeton University Press.
Consequences of Pragmatism: Essays 1972-1980.Richard Rorty - 1982 - University of Minnesota Press.
Semantical Considerations on Modal Logic.Saul Kripke - 1963 - Acta Philosophica Fennica 16:83-94.
Conceptions of truth.Wolfgang Künne - 2003 - New York: Oxford University Press.
An introduction to modal logic.G. E. Hughes - 1968 - London,: Methuen. Edited by M. J. Cresswell.

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