, Volume 68, Issue 1, pp 129–148

A Dilemma About Necessity


    • Department of PhilosophyUniversity of Minnesota-Twin Cities
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10670-007-9082-x

Cite this article as:
Hanks, P.W. Erkenn (2008) 68: 129. doi:10.1007/s10670-007-9082-x


The problem of the source of necessity is the problem of explaining what makes necessary truths necessarily true. Simon Blackburn has presented a dilemma intended to show that any reductive, realist account of the source of necessity is bound to fail. Although Blackburn's dilemma faces serious problems, reflection on the form of explanations of necessities reveals that a revised dilemma succeeds in defeating any reductive account of the source of necessity. The lesson is that necessity is metaphysically primitive and irreducible.


NecessityMetaphysics of modalitySimon Blackburn

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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007