Quantifier Variance and Realism: Essays in Metaontology

ISBN : 9780199732111

Eli Hirsch
288 ページ
146 x 214 mm

Eli Hirsch has contributed steadily to metaphysics since his ground-breaking (and much cited) work on identity through time (culminating in the 1982 OUP book The Concept of Identity). Within the last 10 years, his work on realism and quantifier variance has been front-and-center in the minds of many metaphysicians. Metametaphysics, which looks at foundational questions about the very practice of metaphysics and the questions it raises, is now a popular area of discussion. There is a lot of anxiety about what ontology is, and Hirsch's diagnosis of how revisionary ontologists go wrong is one of the main views being discussed. This volume collects HIrsch's essays from the last decade (with the exception of one article from 1978) on ontology and metametaphysics which are very much tied to these debates. His essays develop a distinctive language-based argument against various anti-commonsensical views that have recently dominated ontology. All these views go astray, Hirsch says, by failing to interpret ordinary assertions about existence in a plausibly charitable way, so their philosophizing leads them to misuse language about ontology - our ordinary concept of 'what exists' - in favor of a position othat is quite different. Hirsch will supply a new introduction. The volume will interest philosophers of metaphysics currently engaged in these debates.


1. "A Sense of Unity," The Journal of Philosophy, September l978
2. "Basic Objects: A Reply to Xu," Mind & Language, 1997
3. "Objectivity Without Objects," in World Congress of Philosophers, Volume 5: Epistemology, 1999
4. "The Vagueness of Identity," Philosophical Topics, 2000
5. "Quantifier Variance and Realism," Philosophical Issues, 2002
6. . "Against Revisionary Ontology," Philosophical Topics, 2003
7. "Comments on Theodore Sider's Four Dimensionalism," Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, May 2004
8. "Sosa's Existential Relativism," in Ernest Sosa and His Critics, Blackwell, 2004
9. "Physical-Object Ontology, Verbal Disputes, and Common Sense," Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, January 2005
10. "Ontological Arguments: Interpretive Charity and Quantifier Variance", in Metaphysical Debates , Blackwell, 2008
11. "Language, Ontology, and Structure", Nous, September 2008
12. "Ontology and Alternative Languages", Metametaphysics, Oxford University Press, 2009


Eli Hirsch is Professor of Philosophy, Brandeis University; author of Dividing Reality (OUP 1997)