A Referential Theory of Truth and Falsity  book cover
1st Edition

A Referential Theory of Truth and Falsity

ISBN 9780367760540
Published May 4, 2022 by Routledge
300 Pages

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Book Description

This book proposes a novel theory of truth and falsity. It argues that truth is a form of reference and falsity is a form of reference failure.

Most of the philosophical literature on truth concentrates on certain ontological and epistemic problems. This book focuses instead on language. By utilizing the Fregean idea that sentences are singular referring expressions, the author develops novel connections between the philosophical study of truth and falsity and the huge literature in in the philosophy of language on the notion of reference. The first part of the book constructs the author’s theory and argues for it in length. Part II addresses the ways in which the theory relates to, and is different from, some of the basic theories of truth. Part III takes up how to account for the truth of sentences with logical operators and quantifiers. Finally, Part IV discusses the applications and implications of the theory for longstanding problems in philosophy of language, metaphysics, and epistemology.

A Referential Theory of Truth and Falsity will appeal to researchers and advanced students working in philosophy of language, epistemology, metaphysics, and linguistics.

Table of Contents


Part I: The Referential Theory of Truth and Falsity

1. Introducing the Referential Theory

2. Frege’s Theory of Truth and Falsity

3. Whenglish: A Language with No Sentences

4. Slingshot Argument

Part II: Some Common Theories of Truth in Relation to the Referential Theory

5. Correspondence Theories

6. Identity Theory

7. Truthmaker Theories

8. Deflationism

Part III: Sentences with Logical Operators

9. Negation

10. Disjunctions and Conditionals

11. Existential and General Statements

Part IV: Applications and Implications of the Referential Theory

12. Liar Paradox

13. Sentence Reference and User Reference

14. Ostensible versus Inostensible Reference

15. Sentences as Rigid and Accidental Designators

16. Necessity and Contingency

17. Knowledge and Curiosity

18. Evolution of Language and Emergence of Truth and Falsity.



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Ilhan Inan is Full Professor of Philosophy at Koç University, Turkey. He is the author of The Philosophy of Curiosity (Routledge, 2012) and co-editor of The Moral Psychology of Curiosity (2018).