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Mathematical naturalism forbids philosophical interventions in mathematical practice. This principle, strictly construed, places severe constraints on legitimate philosophizing about mathematics; it is also arguably incompatible with mathematical realism. One argument for the latter conclusion charges the realist with inability to take a truly naturalistic view of the Gödel Program in set theory. This argument founders on the disagreement among mathematicians about that program's prospects for success. It also turns out that when disagreements run this deep it is counterproductive to take too narrow a view of how philosophers of mathematics may legitimately proceed.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Philosophy Brooklyn College

Publication date: 2006-09-01

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