Actuality, Possibility, and Worlds
Actuality, Possibility and Worlds is an exploration of the Aristotelian account that sees possibilities as grounded in causal powers. On his way to that account, Pruss surveys a number of historical approaches and argues that logicist approaches to possibility are implausible.The notion of possible worlds appears to be useful for many purposes, such as the analysis of counterfactuals or elucidating the nature of propositions and properties. This usefulness of possible worlds makes for a second general question: Are there any possible worlds and, if so, what are they? Are they concrete universes as David Lewis thinks, Platonic abstracta as per Robert M. Adams and Alvin Plantinga, or maybe linguistic or mathematical constructs such as Heller thinks? Or is perhaps Leibniz right in thinking that possibilia are not on par with actualities and that abstracta can only exist in a mind, so that possible worlds are ideas in the mind of God?
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abstract account of modality account of possibility actual world affairs alethic modal argue argument Aristotelian Aristotelian account Aristotelian–Leibnizian account assertion axioms believe cardinality causal causal capability causes CEMR concept concrete contingent counterfactuals counterpart counterpart theory deterministic dispositional property divine ideas divine simplicity entails entities ersatz Ersatzist existence explanation express fact false give God’s haecceities hence holds horse identity imagine implausible impossible indiscernible individuals induction infinite instance instantiates intuition involved language laws Leibniz Lewis Lewis’s Lewis’s account Lewis’s view Lewisian mathematical modal claims modal realism modal truths moral Moreover n-tuples necessarily necessary truth Necessitation necessity negation nonetheless notion objection Ockham’s razor ofthe one’s ontological perhaps photons physical Platonic plausible possibilifier possible worlds problem purple tiger quantification Radical Theory reason to think rigid designator Section seems sense sentences Smith someone space-time spatio-temporally related Spinoza square circles Suppose T-schema talk theorem things truthmaker unicorns universe