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Types and TokensOn Abstract Objects$
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Linda Wetzel

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780262013017

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262013017.001.0001

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Types Exist

Types Exist

Chapter:
(p.23) 2 Types Exist
Source:
Types and Tokens
Author(s):

Linda Wetzel

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262013017.003.0027

This chapter presents some objections to the argument contending that if a conclusion is an immediate consequence of the data, the burden of proof lies on those who would deny it. The main objection posits that each claim appearing to refer to a type is merely a manner of speaking for a claim that does not actually refer to a type. Because such apparent references can be “paraphrased away,” they are harmless, and we need not suppose that types exist. In denying the existence of types, the main motivation is epistemological in nature: knowledge of types, which are abstract objects, is not possible since knowledge requires some sort of relationship, and abstract objects do not stand in causal relations with humans.

Keywords:   burden of proof, types, existence of types, abstract objects, knowledge, causal relations

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