, Volume 160, Issue 3, pp 455-463
Date: 07 Sep 2011

On Richard’s When Truth Gives Out

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Mark Richard’s project in When Truth Gives Out is two-fold: (i) to carve out a place for sentences, propositions, and beliefs that are not truth-apt, but are nevertheless “fact-stating” and “about the world” in a robust a way (Chaps. 1–3), and (ii) to show that even among truth-apt propositions, evaluating them for truth or falsity is often not a guide to whether they are rationally acceptable (Chaps. 4 and 5). In short, Richard’s goal is to show that truth is not nearly as important as it has been taken to be when it comes to objectivity and acceptability. We shall have something to say about each of these aspects of his project and the connections between them.

Truth

Richard spends much of the Introduction arguing that truth predicates should not invariably be used as devices of endorsement. His reason seems to be that if some fact-stating declarative sentences are neither true nor false,

Throughout we follow Richard in defining ‘is false’ as ‘has a true negation’.

then it is inappropri ...