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International Journal for Ontology and Metaphysics

Managing Editor: Koridze, Georg

Ed. by Hüntelmann, Rafael / Meixner, Uwe / Tegtmeier, Erwin

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Intentionality, Privilege and World Pluralism: Reply to Beillard

Timothy J. Nulty
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  • Department of Philosophy, College of Arts & Sciences, University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, 285 Old Westport Road, North Dartmouth, MA 02747-2300, USA
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Published Online: 2017-03-25 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/mp-2017-0009


I respond to Julian Beillard’s (2016) critique of my arguments (2009, 2015) for a plurality of worlds. My initial arguments deployed the notions of relevant similarity and primitive triangulation found in the later writings of Donald Davidson. More specifically, I address Beillard’s claims that my use of intentionality to develop further Davidson’s concept of primitive triangulation is incoherent and leads to empirically absurd results. I argue that Beillard’s two main arguments—the causal objection and the coherence objection – fail due to a limited and erroneous understanding of the forms of intentionality relevant to primitive triangulation. I argue Beillard unjustifiably privileges one form of intentionality as the standard for what counts as real in a given world. Some of Beillard’s claims might in fact commit him to the world pluralism I advocate.

Keywords: Davidson; triangulation; intentionality; pluralism; worlds; realism


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About the article

Published Online: 2017-03-25

Published in Print: 2017-09-26

Citation Information: Metaphysica, Volume 18, Issue 2, Pages 237–251, ISSN (Online) 1874-6373, ISSN (Print) 1437-2053, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/mp-2017-0009.

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