Against Against Fictional Realism

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In a recent (2005) paper, Anthony Everett has mounted a very serious attack against realism with respect to fictional entities. According to Everett, ficta raise deep logico-ontological worries, for they violate some basic logical laws and are problematically indeterminate with respect to both their existence and identity. Since an antirealist account for sentences apparently committing us to ficta is available, no such committment is really needed. In this paper I will try to show, first, that the antirealist account Everett proposes for those sentences is not convincing. Moreover, by relying on the Meinongians' distinctions between i) predicative and propositional negation and ii) either modes of predication or kinds of property, I will argue that the logico-ontological problems Everett raises against ficta can be solved. Finally, I will try to show that both the 'modes of predication' and the 'kinds of property'-distinctions (especially the first one) are not so problematic as Everett holds.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2010

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