Anti-Realism, Truth-Value Links and Tensed Truth Predicates
Weiss (Bernhard)
Source: Mind, Vol. 105, No. 420 (Oct., 1996), pp. 577-602
Paper - Abstract

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Author’s Abstract

  1. Anti-realism about the past is apparently in conflict with our acceptance of a set of systematic linkages between the truth-values of differently tensed sentences made at different times. Arguments based on acceptance of these so-called truth-value links seem to show that fully accounting for our use of the past and future tenses will involve use of a notion of truth which is not epistemically constrained, and is thus anti-realistically unacceptable.
  2. I elaborate these difficulties through an examination of work by Michael Dummett and Crispin Wright.
  3. I agree with Wright's rejection of Dummett's proposal but go on to argue that Wright's account fares no better.
  4. Building on what I take to be the failure of Wright's account, I offer a solution for the anti-realist which diagnoses the problem as stemming from an equivocation in the meanings assigned to the tensed truth predicates.
  5. I close by raising a different problem for anti-realist accounts of the past, one which is, however, related to more general difficulties for anti-realist theories of meaning.

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