The easy approach to ontology

Axiomathes 19 (1):1-15 (2009)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

This paper defends the view that ontological questions (properly understood) are easy—too easy, in fact, to be subjects of substantive and distinctively philosophical debates. They are easy, roughly, in the sense that they may be resolved straightforwardly—generally by a combination of conceptual and empirical enquiries. After briefly outlining the view and some of its virtues, I turn to examine two central lines of objection. The first is that this ‘easy’ approach is itself committed to substantive ontological views, including an implausibly permissive ontology. The second is that it, like neo-Fregean views, relies on transformation rules that are questionable on both logical and ontological grounds. Ultimately, I will argue, the easy view is not easily assailed by either of these routes, and so remains (thus far) a tenable and attractive approach.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 92,261

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Carnap and ontological pluralism.Matti Eklund - 2009 - In David Chalmers, David Manley & Ryan Wasserman (eds.), Metametaphysics: New Essays on the Foundations of Ontology. Oxford University Press. pp. 130--56.
The easy problems ain't so easy.David Hodgson - 1996 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 3 (1):69-75.
Solving the problem of easy knowledge.Tim Black - 2008 - Philosophical Quarterly 58 (233):597-617.
Basic Knowledge and Easy Understanding.Kelly Becker - 2012 - Acta Analytica 27 (2):145-161.

Analytics

Added to PP
2009-01-28

Downloads
464 (#42,243)

6 months
42 (#95,987)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Amie Thomasson
Dartmouth College

References found in this work

Material beings.Peter Van Inwagen - 1990 - Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
Sense and Sensibilia.John Langshaw Austin - 1962 - Oxford University Press. Edited by G. Warnock.
Material Beings.Peter Van Inwagen - 1990 - Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press.
Ordinary Objects.Amie L. Thomasson (ed.) - 2007 - New York: Oxford University Press.

View all 38 references / Add more references