VICTR Presents: Ragnar van der Merwe

A Dilemma for Determination Pluralists (or Dualists)

Ragnar van der Merwe (University of Johannesburg) will present “A Dilemma for Determination Pluralists (or Dualists)” at the Virtual International Consortium for Truth Research on March 1, at 10:00am EST.

Abstract: Douglas Edwards is arguably the most prominent contemporary advocate of moderate alethic pluralism. Significantly influenced by Crispin Wright and Michael Lynch, his work on the nature of truth has become widely discussed in the topical literature. Edwards labels his version of moderate alethic pluralism determination pluralism. At first blush, determination pluralism appears philosophically promising. The position deserves thoughtful consideration, particularly because of its capacity to accommodate the scope problem. I argue, however, that upon analysis the view is better understood as a form of metaphysical dualism or what I will call meta-dualism. Furthermore, determination pluralists face a dilemma; there appears to be an instability at the core of their dualistic model. On the one horn of the dilemma, they need a clear metaphysical demarcation at the interface of their two necessary domains. On the other horn, they seem to need to a metaphysically vague boundary at the interface of their two necessary domains. Determination pluralism needs substantial revision.

This will be a read-ahead talk. For a copy of the paper to be read in advance, “A Dilemma for Determination Pluralists (or Dualists)”, forthcoming at Axiomathes, please email

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