The Practical Bearings of Truth as Correspondence

Erkenntnis:1-21 (2023)
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Abstract

Pragmatists are usually very antagonistic toward the correspondence theory of truth. They contend that the evidence-transcendent standard entailed by the theory is antithetical to the pragmatist methodology of elucidating concepts by exposing their practical bearings. What use could truth be to us if it offers a target we cannot even see? After judging the correspondence theory to be in violation of the Pragmatic Maxim, the pragmatist is prone to banishing it to the wastelands of empty metaphysics, where nothing of practical importance could ever grow. This article makes the case that this unjust condemnation must be appealed and overturned. The ground for my case is an argument to the effect that the correspondence conception of truth can be practically advantageous, which provides proof of the fact that, contrary to popular pragmatist belief, the correspondence theory does comply with the Pragmatic Maxim.

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Tom Kaspers
University of St. Andrews

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