Multiversism and Concepts of Set: How Much Relativism Is Acceptable?

In Francesca Boccuni & Andrea Sereni (eds.), Objectivity, Realism, and Proof. Filmat Studies in the Philosophy of Mathematics. Springer Verlag. pp. 189-209 (2016)
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Multiverse Views in set theory advocate the claim that there are many universes of sets, no-one of which is canonical, and have risen to prominence over the last few years. One motivating factor is that such positions are often argued to account very elegantly for technical practice. While there is much discussion of the technical aspects of these views, in this paper I analyse a radical form of Multiversism on largely philosophical grounds. Of particular importance will be an account of reference on the Multiversist conception, and the relativism that it implies. I argue that analysis of this central issue in the Philosophy of Mathematics indicates that Radical Multiversism must be algebraic, and cannot be viewed as an attempt to provide an account of reference without a softening of the position.

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Neil Barton
Universit├Ąt Konstanz


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