Language, Ontology, Fiction

  • Frederick Kroon
  • Alberto Voltolini


This chapter is about ontological issues that arise in the context of discourse within and about fiction and fictional characters. Our main focus will be on the divide between broadly realist accounts of fictional characters (the entities supposedly designated by purely fictional terms) and broadly antirealist accounts. Understanding what is at stake requires a brief look both at the nature of fiction, and at the nature of fictional language, in particular the ways in which the semantics of fictional language raises ontological issues. We also consider some arguments that are more directly ontological. In the final section, we turn from ontology to metaphysics and look at the dominant realist theories of fictional objects.


Realism Antirealism Imagination Semantics Objects 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand
  2. 2.University of TurinTurinItaly

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