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  • Russell's Realistic Theory of Truth
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In his early writings The Principles of Mathematics (1903), "Meinong's Theory of Complexes and Assumptions" (1904) and "The Nature of Truth" (1905), Russell held an unusual view about truth which I call "the realistic theory of truth". It is the thesis that truth is an undefinable property which some propositions possess but the others lack; if a proposition possesses the property, it is true, if not, false. Since, according to his ontology, a proposition is an entity whose existence is independent of human minds, a proposition is either true or false without human minds. My aim here is to point out the signficance of the realistic theory of truth and to defend it. First, I show that the realistic theory of truth can explain the truth of those beliefs and sentences which are normally supposed to be the primary bearers of truth. Second, I claim that the reasons by which Russell abandoned the realistic theory of truth in his later writings are merely begging the question. Finally, I argue that although the realistic theory of truth seems to contain an intrinsic difficulty, it can be dissolved by adopting some kind of deflationary view of truth.


  • 哲学論叢

    哲学論叢 24 64-75, 1997-09-01


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